Childhood obesity is on increasing in Africa and the health officials in Uganda and Africa at large are worried that many parents still think obese children are healthy.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that the ‘obesity epidemic’ in children is one of the most serious public health challenges of the 21st century.
The doctors at Nairobi hospital in Kenya and Mulago hospital in Uganda say that these days many child deaths are attributed to being overweight.
Overweight and obesity is directly linked to poor eating habits and physical inactivity levels. The problem of high-fat street foods, trans-fat deep-fried snacks and soda is great.
Overweight is related to urbanisation and industrialisation. In the cities, there is an increasing lack of activity and cheap foods are more accessible and affordable causing overweight.
According to Dr. Timothy Armstrong of WHO’s Department of Chronic Diseases and Health Promotion, overweight children are more likely to become obese adults. Being overweight increases one’s risk of developing serious health conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer at a younger age.
Researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine say the sharp rise in maternal obesity is threatening the lives of newborns.