Critical Analyses of Articles
In her article “Tackling childhood obesity” Bouch (2017) correctly asserts that obesity with its associated conditions poses a serious risk to public health. Her article put more emphasis on the effects of obesity on children since she is of the opinion that youngsters are more likely to develop a multitude of health conditions that are previously rarely seen in children. Of concern is the fact that obese children are more likely to become obese adults and this places their health at more risk mainly because coupled with the health complications associated with child obesity, their adult life could attract more health risks thus affecting their entire lifespan. Of noteworthy in Bouch’s article is that the author also incorporates the emotional and psychological effects of obesity in children since she notes that obese children are prone to bullying which can lead to low self-esteem and social exclusion extending to their adult life. One of the main challenges in dealing with child obesity, as per Bouch (2017) is the fact that health professionals and primary care practitioners are unable to provide the necessary guidance towards dealing with childhood obesity. Her article also points out that parents contribute to unhealthy children since most of them are resistant to diagnosis that may classify their children as being obese. This claim is supported by Redsell et al. (2010) in a different article where the authors opine that parents play a significant role in determining whether their children will be obese or not. It is because of these obstacles that Bouch (2017) is of the view that childhood obesity is a problem that health education ought to be conducted at a community level with better informed parents and healthcare practitioners in order to curtail the effects of obesity in children.
In another article, Glasper (2016) outlines some of the measures that the United Kingdom government has put in place in order to tackle obesity in children. The easiest and most direct approach would be to engage with industries so that they cut down on the amount of sugar added to foods and drinks (Malik et al., 2006). The second approach, according to Glasper (2016) is to encourage primary school children to engage in healthy eating habits. However, in order for the second approach to be a success, it is essential to enforce programs that support healthy eating as suggested by Bouch (2017). This is mainly because as long as parents view large children as cute and healthy, then the present resistance towards healthier children will continue to exist (Redsell et al., 2010). One of the most remarkable aspects of Glasper’s (2016) article is that he delves into the root causes of obesity in children. In his article, Glasper (2016) argues that children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds living in poor regions of the society are more likely to develop weight gain issues when compared to their peers from upper socioeconomic backgrounds. This observation is vital in that it would help industry players and key policymakers in coming up with action plans and educational programs aimed at addressing obesity in children. Thus, the government can both increase levies on soft drinks as well as requiring their manufacturers to reduce sugar content while at the same time introducing programs that enable healthcare practitioners to target children at risk of obesity with appropriate intervention programs.
Furthermore, Silventoinen et al. (2010) discuss the effects of genetic makeup and a person’s environment in relation to childhood obesity. While the contents of the article by Silventoinen et al. are derived from previous research, the authors were able to establish a clear relationship between BMI variation in childhood and both genetic and common environmental factors. Nevertheless, Silventoinen et al. (2010) point out that the effect of common environment disappears during adolescence. However, the study reported a strong correlation between genetic factors and BMI from early childhood and in to adulthood. This article relied on evidence-based research to establish that one’s genetic makeup as well as his or her environment can contribute to his or her obesity as mentioned by Glasper (2016) in the foregoing sections of this paper as well as Visscher et al. (2008) and Brook (1975) who have correlated obesity with heredity factors. The use of evidence-based sources to arrive at the conclusion that genes contribute to childhood obesity through adolescence even after the effect common environmental factors have disappeared is an indicator that familial backgrounds play a major role in determining how prone an individual is to obesity during their adolescence. This is because the genetic effects on a person’s BMI are more long-lasting when compared to common environmental effects, since a person has an influence on the environment and not the genes.
Similarly, Upton et al. (2014) presented analyses of published studies that showed some of the Family-based childhood obesity interventions in the UK. Upton et al. (2014) found that child family-based programmes designed to address overweight children within the UK proved to be effective in reducing the BMI of the obese child. These findings are in agreement with Ogden et al. (2008) who found that programmes targeting the entire family of an obese child are most likely to lead to a reduction in obesity of the affected child.
In exploring the relationship between obesity and type 2 diabetes Haines et al. (2007) conducted a research study within the UK with subjects aged below 17 years. The researchers established that there is an increasing prevalence of type 2 diabetes among UK children which can be attributed to obesity. This is mainly due to the fact that obesity is a contributing factor of type 2 diabetes. The research by Haines et al. (2007) pointed that their data had significant overrepresentation of ethnic minorities within the UK. One of the arguments made by the authors is that race plays a role in obesity which could be reflected on the high levels of type 2 diabetes among the children involved in the studies. These observations are in line with those of Glasper (2016) when he observed that children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are most likely to be affected by obesity than their affluent peers. The article by Haines et al. (2007), therefore, goes to show that obesity and socioeconomic backgrounds are correlated.
Wright &Wales (2016) the authors of “Assessment and management of severely obese children and adolescents” argue that children who are obese are very likely to become obese adults. In their article, they further assert that “cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension, hyperinsulinism and hyperlipidaemia approach 20% in such individuals”. For this reason, the authors of the article suggest a list of measures that can be put in place in order to assess and manage severe childhood and adolescence obesity. Some of the interventions suggested by Wright &Wales (2016) include encouraging children to engage in physical activities, drug treatment, and bariatric surgery. Nevertheless, the adoption of surgery should be as a measure of last resort according to Sachdev et al. (2014) after all other approaches have proved to be fruitless. It is therefore highly advised that parents and their children engage in healthy dietary practices coupled with physical activities in order to encourage their children to lose weight as per the findings of Up...