What are the Consequences of Obesity in Adolescence?

Jacob Queen

The consequences of obesity in adolescence are generally wide ranging, and they can be both physical and mental. One of the main concerns is that overweight adolescents will grow up and eventually become overweight adults. The health consequences of someone being overweight as he ages are significant and potentially severe. There are also potential physical development problems from obesity in growing teens, especially when the obesity is substantial. Finally, some overweight adolescents develop severe emotional problems, and these issues can follow them into adulthood, leading to a wide variety of consequences.

Like adults, children and adolescents need to exercise to maintain a healthy weight for their age and height.
Like adults, children and adolescents need to exercise to maintain a healthy weight for their age and height.

If adolescents don’t get rid of their weight problems before they grow up, studies have suggested that they may retain those weight problems as they age into adulthood. This puts them at a greater risk for everything from high blood pressure to heart issues and blood sugar disorders. Many experts think it is crucial to deal with obesity in adolescence as a way of lessening the weight problems in all of society. Some have also suggested that it would even be better to deal with obesity at an even younger age.

An added complication of obesity in adolescence is that people’s bones can sometimes be changed very easily while they're still growing. Some experts think that carrying around too much weight during the adolescent years might lead to bone and joint disorders for people later in their lives. It can also make the adolescent individual more sedentary because exercise can be much more difficult for people who are obese. Habits formed during the adolescent years can follow a person for his entire life, so becoming sedentary at a young age could lead to a less active lifestyle as he ages. A lack of activity is generally associated with further obesity problems, which is one of the reasons that obesity can be a self-perpetuating phenomenon throughout a person's life.

Emotional consequences of obesity in adolescence are often considered some of the most severe, partly because they happen so easily and are so hard to deal with. People who suffer with obesity during their teen years have a tendency to be depressed as adults, and this can cause them to sometimes live less successful lives overall. Part of this is because they usually fail to lose the weight as they age, and they will often continue to have severe self esteem issues that don't go away.

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