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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/23/2014 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Majority thing that their weights fit in the normal category for their age and height

Should it come as a surprise - or just another sad comment on the prevalence of obesity in the United States? A new study has found that children who are overweight or obese don't see themselves as being so. Researchers and medical experts says this needs to change, as children need a greater awareness of their weight problem in order to address it.

Curiously, researchers found that some obese children even believed that they were underweight.

Curiously, researchers found that some obese children even believed that they were underweight.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/23/2014 (8 months ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Obesity, overweight, children, self-perception, study


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to a new government survey, many children who are overweight or obese are unaware of their conditions. Weight issues among children, medical experts agree, must have the children first acknowledge their problem.

Overall, 30 percent of children and teens grouped themselves in the wrong weight status. Close to 81 percent of overweight boys and 71 percent of overweight girls said that their weights fit in the normal category for their age and height.

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Yet another 48 percent of obese boys and 36 percent of obese girls thought that their weights were normal.

In the meantime, the obesity epidemic continues to escalate. Close to one-third of the adult U.S. population are currently dealing with weight issues.

In the past 30 years, it's estimated that the number of obese children has doubled, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"When overweight kids underestimate their weight, they are less likely to take steps to reduce their weight or do additional things to control their weight, like adopt healthier eating habits or exercise regularly," lead study author of the report, Neda Sarafrazi, a nutritional epidemiologist at NCHS, said.

"On the other hand, when normal weight or underweight kids overestimate their weight, they might have unhealthy weight-control behaviors."

Curiously, researchers found that some obese children even believed that they were underweight. It was a misconception that was more common in children of non-Hispanic black and Mexican-American boys and children from low-income families.

The study's findings suggest that there may not be proper education about fitness, diet and proper weight at educational institutions throughout the country. Researchers hope that the study will prompt further investigation and possible restructuring of such topics.

More information regarding the findings can be seen via the study "Perception of Weight Status in U.S. Children and Adolescents Aged 8-15 Years, 2005-2012."

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