Being overweight is not healthy for anyone, but it can be especially dangerous for children. Children are still developing both physically and mentally, so the extra weight puts them at risk of serious health problems in adulthood.
It can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. What is overweight for a 14-year-old? This article will help you identify if your child is overweight and what to do about it.
What Does Being Overweight Mean?
Being overweight means having a body mass index (BMI) of 25 or above. BMI measures how much fat you have in your body based on your height and weight.
There are different types of obesity:
- Morbid obesity: This type of obesity is when someone has a BMI of 40 or above. This is the most serious type of obesity and can lead to health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
- Class I obesity: This type of obesity is when someone has a BMI between 30 and 34.99.
- Class II obesity: This type of obesity is when someone has a BMI between 35 and 39.99.
- Class III obesity: This type of obesity is when someone has a BMI between 40 and 49.99.
Obesity is a serious medical condition that can lead to many health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. The best way to lose weight safely is through changes in diet and exercise, and working with a weight loss coach can provide additional guidance and support.
However, sometimes medications or surgery are needed for people who have severe health problems from being obese. If you are overweight, it is important to talk to your doctor about what you can do to get healthier.
What Is Overweight For A 14-Year-Old?
There is no definitive answer as everyone’s weight and body composition will be different. However, a commonly used definition of overweight is when someone’s body mass index (BMI) falls into the “overweight” or “obese” category.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a BMI between the 85th and 95th percentile for children of the same age, sex, and height is considered overweight.
This means that for a 14-year-old, a weight between 122 and 147 pounds would be considered overweight. If someone has a higher BMI, it could also indicate that they are at risk of becoming obese as an adult.
While BMI is not the only indicator of health, it is one measure that can help you determine if your child’s weight is within a healthy range. If you are concerned that your child may be overweight or obese, please consult with your doctor to discuss what steps you can take to help them reach a healthy weight.
What Are Some Ways An Overweight Child Can Lose Weight?
There are a few things that an obese child can do to help lose weight. We will look at each of these options:
One of the best ways to lose weight is to eat healthier foods. This means eating more fruits and vegetables and fewer processed foods. It can also mean choosing lean protein sources like chicken or fish instead of fatty meats. An overweight child should try to make small changes in their diet that will add up over time.
Another great way to lose weight is to exercise. This doesn’t mean going to the gym for hours every day. Even moderate amounts of exercise can help. An overweight child can start by taking a brisk walk every day or doing light cardio exercises three times a week.
Do not skip meals or fast.
Eating less food but more frequently will help the child to feel full and satisfied with their portion sizes. If they are still hungry after a meal, it is okay to have something small as long as they don’t overeat. Overeating can lead to heartburn, indigestion, and other health problems.
Getting enough sleep:
Another way to lose weight is by getting enough sleep. The body needs around eight hours of good quality sleep every night, so an overweight child should make sure they are doing what it takes to get that much rest each night.
Losing weight slowly:
Finally, it’s important to lose weight slowly. This is the healthiest way to do it, and it can help keep the weight off in the long run. An overweight child should aim to lose about 0.25-0.50 pounds per week. This may not seem like a lot, but it can add up over time.
Why Is Maintaining A Healthy Weight Essential For A Teenager?
There are several reasons why maintaining a healthy weight is essential for teenagers.
Heart disease: Overweight teenagers are at increased risk for heart disease. This is true into adulthood, not just during the teenage years.
Type II Diabetes: Type II diabetes can stem from obesity which also increases the chance of getting insulin resistance and type I diabetes in teenagers with a genetic predisposition towards it.
Mental Health Issues: Though this varies from person to person, some people are more susceptible to mental issues when overweight. This is because they have self-esteem issues and are teased more or cannot do things because of their weight.
Bone Health: Being overweight can also lead to decreased bone density and an increased chance of developing osteoporosis in later life. Osteoporosis is a condition that affects the bones, and it can be caused by being underweight or obese, which decreases bone formation and increases the chances of getting fractures.
Dermatological Problems: Acne is common in teenagers who have an unhealthy weight, as are skin rashes and fungal infections.
Joint Problems: Being overweight can also lead to joint problems such as arthritis in later life.
When Should One Be Concerned About A 14-Year Old’s Weight?
When a 14-year old’s weight falls outside of the normal range for their age and height, it is cause for concern. A child’s body mass index (BMI) can determine if they are overweight or obese. Children who have a BMI greater than the 85th percentile are overweight, and children who have a BMI greater than the 95th percentile are considered obese.
If you are concerned that your 14-year old is overweight or obese, you should consult with your child’s pediatrician. The pediatrician can perform a physical examination and order laboratory tests to determine an underlying medical condition causing the child’s weight gain. If there is an underlying medical condition, the pediatrician will treat the condition and help the child lose weight.
If your 14-year old’s BMI is within the normal range for their age and height, you should still monitor their weight and diet closely. You can do this by measuring your child’s waist circumference and calculating their body fat percentage. A healthy waist circumference for a 14-year old is less than 80 cm, and a healthy body fat percentage is less than 25%.
Make sure you also talk to the child about healthy eating and physical activity. Help your child create a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy products. Encourage your child to be physically active for at least 60 minutes per day.
What Are Some Common Causes Of Obesity In Teenagers?
Many factors can lead to obesity in teenagers. Some of the most common causes include:
-Eating too much unhealthy food: Junk food, fast food, processed foods, etc.
-Not getting enough exercise: This can include things like spending too much time in front of the TV or playing video games, walking or biking instead of taking public transportation, and not being active at school.
-Genetics: Some people are more prone to weight gain than others due to their genes.
-Hormonal changes: Changes in hormones can sometimes lead to weight gain, especially in girls during puberty.
-Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and Cushing’s syndrome can cause teenagers to gain weight.
-Medications: Some medications, like corticosteroids, can cause weight gain.
-Psychological factors: Emotional problems like stress or anxiety can lead to overeating and weight gain.
-Poor eating habits: Not eating regular meals, not drinking enough water, and choosing sugary drinks over healthy options can contribute to obesity.
Teenagers need to be aware of these causes of obesity and take steps to address them if they’re struggling with weight gain. There are many things they can do to get back on track, like eating healthy foods, getting enough exercise, and talking to a doctor or nutritionist if needed. By making these changes, they can improve their health and well-being now and in the future.
Being overweight can have many negative consequences for teenagers, including health problems such as joint pain, skin rashes, fungal infections, and obesity-related diseases like type II diabetes. If you are concerned that your 14-year old is overweight or obese, you should consult with your child’s pediatrician.
The pediatrician can perform a physical examination and order laboratory tests to determine an underlying medical condition causing the child’s weight gain. If there is an underlying medical condition, the pediatrician will treat the condition and help the child lose weight.
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