Children who eat poorly are more likely to develop certain
long-term health problems and complications, including:
Osteoporosis in later
- Cardiovascular diseases. Growing up eating foods high in fat,
sugar, and salt can increase the risk for high
high blood pressure, and
atherosclerosis as an adult.1
- Type 2 diabetes, which in children is linked to being
overweight, being physically inactive, and having a family history of
type 2 diabetes.
- Certain breathing problems, such as
asthma in children who are overweight.1
Complications of being overweight include liver problems,
problems with hip development (slipped capital femoral epiphysis) or
bone growth in the legs,
gallstones, early puberty, and
polycystic ovary syndrome.1
child's doctor regularly screens for signs of these health problems. If your
child needs treatment, work with your child's doctor to ensure that your child
is getting the best medical care possible, both at home and at medical
checkups. Keep your child's relationship with food separate from his or her
medical condition. And guide your child's eating with healthy food choices.
Avoid putting your child on a weight-gain or weight-loss diet.
Healthy Eating for Children
Gahagan S (2011). Overweight and obesity. In RM Kliegman et al., eds., Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics, 19th ed., pp. 179–188. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier.