Eating disorders and weight gain is a sensitive subject, and I truly empathize with anyone who has ever struggled with an eating disorder. But, prevention starts with awareness and discussion, so I believe it’s important to educate and talk about this topic so we’re all aware of how to prevent serious eating disorders from affecting our loved ones.
I recently came across an article with a study from the United Kingdom related to how teen eating disorders may impact weight later. From the article:
Researchers looked for early symptoms of eating disorders among more than 7,000 13-year-olds and found certain symptoms predicted which children would have weight problems at age 15. Girls who engaged in binge eating at 13 tended to have a higher body mass index (BMI), a measure of weight relative to height, two years later.
My humble opinion on this study and the topic of eating disorders and weight gain is that parents’ lifestyle and eating habits can impact their children’s health and weight. It’s extremely important that parents pay attention to their children’s eating habits and start introducing nutritious food and promoting healthy portions early in life.
I also think it’s critical for parents to encourage physical activities and sports. Rather than forcing them to play outside when they’re glued to the TV or iPad, find a way to play with them to encourage them to get away from the screen for awhile.
Most research studies about childhood obesity I’ve come across show the best way to combat this epidemic is through prevention and early intervention. Addressing this problem requires a partnership among government agencies, schools and parents.