Chubby kids may be adorable,… but if that
chubbiness extends into their adolescence and adulthood… it could become a serious
problem… for the individual and society as a whole.
Now, Korea′s overall obesity rate, particularly… among young boys,… is increasing at a worrying
pace,… now surpassing the OECD average. Sohn Jong-in has this story.
Eight-year-old Sohn Soo-min is heavier than most of his classmates.
After a body check up, his parents were told he has a body fat ratio twice the average
for a boy his age. Like many kids in Korea, Soo-min likes to
tuck into calorie and carbohydrate-rich food like white rice, red meat and fast food, and
doesn′t get enough exercise. “I like snacks and drinks.”
sov: “I like soda like Coke.”
His mother wasn′t aware of the consequences and just gave him whatever he asked for.
“I heard people say that fat children usually eat up being taller as adults.”
The problem has worsened in recent years. In Korea, one in four boys aged 5 to 17 are
obese, which is slightly higher than the OECD average.
What′s more concerning is that well over half of those boys remain obese into adulthood
and are at higher risk of becoming morbidly obese.
Obesity can lead to a host of other health issues, like diabetes, high blood pressure
and it can also increase the chance of cerebrovascular disease at a young age.
“Obesity is known to cause cancer, including colorectal cancer, breast cancer, as well
as asthma, fatty liver and other liver disorders.” It also incurs great social costs in terms
of medical expenses and loss of production. According to recent data, the socioeconomic
costs stemming from child obesity in Korea amounts to 1.3 billion U.S. dollars each year.
Child and teenage obesity not only affects the individual, but their family, school and
the community as a whole. Experts advise parents to create a friendly,
but firm atmosphere for their children, and encourage them to exercise and eat fresh fruit
and vegetables to maintain a healthier lifestyle. Sohn Jung-in, Arirang News.