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Overview of Obesity

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As kids and teens spend more time in front of the computer and TV, their levels of physical activity have decreased while their weights have increased. With obesity on the rise, find out what you can do to fight the battle of the bulge.

Obesity - What Is Obesity?

Some peeps are pudgy around the tummy, but obesity is much more serious than that. Being obese means that you are extremely overweight and at risk for health problems. To find out if you're obese, doctors will measure your height and weight to calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI), and then rate it on a special chart. Obesity is bad news for your body cuz it causes illnesses that adults typically get, like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, liver disease and type 2 diabetes, which prevents your body from converting food into energy.

Obesity - What Causes Obesity?

  • Genes - Like hair and eye color, obesity is inherited and runs in the family. Your genes determine how fast or slow you burn calories and how your body metabolizes food.
  • Lifestyle - Kids and teens who spend their time watching TV and playing video games are at a higher risk for becoming obese than active peeps who play sports regularly.
  • Emotions - Emotions can fuel obesity. You tend to overeat when you're depressed, stressed out or even bored.

Obesity - How Can You Avoid Becoming Obese?

  • Try to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day. Running, rollerblading and swimming are all great ways to burn calories!
  • Walk or bike to school and to friend's houses instead of getting the 'rents to drive you.
  • Quench your thirst with water and milk, and cut down on sugary drinks like pop.
  • Eat five servings of fruits and veggies a day.
  • Snack on healthier munchies like carrot sticks instead of chips and cookies.

Obesity - Did U Know?

  • Obesity is on the rise in North America. In Canada, 36% of teens are obese, while that number soars to 44% for American teens.
  • Around 300 million people in the world are obese, even though obesity is one of the 10 most preventable health risks, according to the World Health Organization.
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