According to a report by Center for Disease Control and Prevention, obese children weight is not considered a problem when kids are asked about how they see their body. Instead, they believe their body weight is appropriate. In a study called the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and developed by CDC, the results indicated that only a small percent of obese boys and girls correctly identified their weight, the vast majority didn’t.
The study was a longitudinal one and covered data since 2005 until 2012 from around 9.1 million kids.
Obese children weight is seen as normal because the number of persons considered obese according to medical terms are increasing every year, which means that normality starts to be considered not what a body should weigh, but an average image of what surrounds those kids. This explanation was offered by Dr. Daniel Neides from Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. At the same time, kids from obese families have higher weight misperceptions, because they see this weight model at their parents. The fact suggests that obesity can also be a socially-induced disease, as previous studies revealed.
Obese children weight is misperceived in the case of low-income families
The report also indicated teens are a little more aware of weight problems than younger children and that minority groups are also less aware of these issues. Not being aware of obesity makes them unwilling to make steps to change their weight. On the other hand, there are also normal weighed children or underweighted ones who see themselves as overweighed, which might highlight that the problem with body images doesn’t affect only obese children, but all children. According to the study, the following figures show how weight misperception is distributed among young people: 42% of children considered obese think they have the right weight; 76% of those considered overweight see themselves as having the right figure; and 13% of those considered having an appropriate weight see themselves as either too thin or too fat.
Also, income was differently associated with weight misperception: kids coming from high-income families had a lower weight misperception than kids from low-income families did.
The same study gives and overall analysis of trends in overweight evolution. The report says the trend is stabilizing and the number of people considered overweight according to objective measures isn’t increasing.
As we have seen, families have an important role in how obese children weight is perceived by their kids. According to Time, some parents refuse to see their child as overweight, adding to other factors that might shape their misperception. Being obese has some difficult- to- deal- with health issues consequences, like osteoarthritis, type-2 diabetes, heart problems, and ovarian cancers.