WWL>Topics>>4-14 1:10pm Angela, childhood obesity

4-14 1:10pm Angela, childhood obesity

Apr 14, 2014|

Childhood obesity has huge FINANCIAL consequences. And, how does that compare to costs associated with PREVENTION? We’ve looked at the impact of obesity on the health of children…let’s look at the economics…and the impact on our pocketbooks. The price tag for childhood obesity is $19,000 per kid. The lifetime costs for obese 10 year olds in America…only kids that age…is roughly $14 BILLION dollars. The costs of overweight, obesity and physical inactivity is skyrocketing as the demographic of overweight kids grows and grows. Many say it threatens America’s future. We were joined by Dr. Melinda Sothern, Professor of Public Health at LSU Health Sciences Center and author of Trim Kids.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Really hope you have a wonderful weekend it was absolutely. Gorgeous. I hope you made it down to the French Quarter fast it it had to be one of the best they've ever had. We were lucky enough to broadcast their Friday for three hours and it was three hours of nothing but -- -- it was wonderful that people came -- a one -- -- two when you did come mind and so I got to see some of the faces on the phones and some of the the people who say they'd listen and that means a tremendous amount. We we are going to talk some serious things today but. More than ever I'm gonna ask you to participate. Especially in this first show. We've talked about this before and Morgan talk about it again and again. Until we here's some good news about the epidemic. Of not just fact kids but obese children. We know that parents' love and adore their kids and for those with that children the may not realize. That they're shortening their kids' lives. It's tough talk but it all begins with parents. Today we have for the whole hour doctor Melinda southern who was a professor of public health that the L issue Health Science Center. And the author of the book -- kids. I'm inviting parents to give us a call -- 26018. Salmon they. Asked the good doctor any thing about what can be done to help your kids get and stay healthy. And if you are parent and have worked out a good way to keep your child on healthy foods and keep him or her physically active. Please please give us a call and share how you're doing missed. Doctors others well aware than a new report came out actually giving a cost factor. On what it takes an extra medical cost for an overweight child. 191000. Dollars over the course of a lifetime. Vs a child who was of average weight. But I think the more impressive number is is if you took every obese ten year old today. There every one -- -- United States that extra cost would be fourteen billion dollars. We're talking about the health of children were talking about the length of life of children who are obese. And then we're also talking about medical costs and nobody likes to bill would -- no we need to talk about medical complete. That is why I'm so delighted that doctor southern joins us again because she really is the expert. Just your thoughts when you read that report. Well. Thank you for having me on the show commands are really appreciated and I do hope the parents -- land and I answered questions and actually share some ideas -- -- successful parent with regard to an overweight child. But I think what's more frightening to me is that 48% of children in Louisiana overweight. We are actually almost doubled the national average so if you put a cost factor that in a state that's struggling with its health care cost. Then we're talking about millions and billions in our own state. On the other thing is that 30% of the children in Louisiana obese and that cost a much higher for an obese child vs an overweight child. And we have a higher prevalence is severely obese children. And those are the ones that we call super apiece and they were not even able to calculate those cost because they're so extreme. And they're so on its diversified so a child with severe obesity the complications are so broad. That it was actually it's actually very difficult to. Figure out what those cost are doing the child's life. But even a child who who has risk factors who even isn't overweight yet but let's say they're they have a major risk factors such as. There report child or their minority child or both parents are overweight for example those at very high risk factors. And low birth weight if the child is on -- full term low birth -- More high birth weight -- the child is -- point very fat not big but fat those children. The cost for them with 161000. Dollars per child and that's even before they become overweight. The cost already multiply because this severe obesity hits early it hits the 345 -- world. And I want parents to pay attention to this. These children will not grow into their weight. They can't because there -- is so excessive that it's impossible. OK let's break this down but give me the definition overweight vs obese OK so a child is overweight. If they just. What we considered choppy so this is a child might need to lose if they're very young fifteen to twenty pounds sort child -- under ten would be 1520 pounds. A child over ten might need to lose between thirty and forty pounds that's overweight obese would be a young child that has to lose. Twice that thirty to forty pounds and an obese teenager would need to lose between fifty and sixty counts. A child who is twice -- they're healthy weight so for example. A young child should -- you know save fifty pounds at Charles Wayne Hunter counts are teenagers spouse to weigh a 120 and their way into forty. That's the definition of severe obesity and that's the rates that's growing the most that's the rate that every couple of years when they measure it goes up 234%. So overweight children. The prevalence or the amount of overweight children seems to be plateauing. Going up just a little bit it's not enough to be. Called scientifically significant but it's it's creeping up there but within that group. They're very overweight the severe -- continues to rise and -- and it's rising at alarming rates. You know even on the noon news on channel four today they had to figure that 20% another study. Permanent then you know -- a permanent I'd -- to came out with 20% of women who gain too much weight during pregnancy. Will have an overweight can't -- and and and if they're lucky they'll have an overweight kid of their unlucky they'll develop distaste on diabetes and they haven't they'll have a child with. Pre diabetes to have a child born with insulin resistance that's what's even more alarming is that the obese pregnant woman. Oftentimes flips to the worst state which is that diabetic state which everyone everyone considers gestation diabetes have a temporary condition. But it's not temporary for the child. The baby cannot handle that diabetic state I -- the womb of the mother. Is the environment for the baby and it -- -- if it is diabetic is that. If those high levels of sugar are getting into the baby's body in the baby doesn't have enough insulin to take care of that. Their insulin. Resistant or pre diabetic in the womb and then when they're born. Their metabolism. Is different and it it's it's the rates are are so so alarming. That there's huge efforts to keep women from becoming overweight because that leads to that diabetes during pregnancy that's of more concern. -- overweight babies that are born the reason why we're concerned and overweight is because for their land. Okay they have more weight and nationhood and when they actually do studies of whether that's fat weight or lean weight or blown way. It's actually fat weight so the they are actually being born obese and we didn't have the tools to measure this that 2030 years ago we just thought it was a big. Healthy baby -- it's not a baby that's 1012 pounds. No it was only you know seventeen inches is a fat baby so. On what parents understand this is not the 24 year old twenty fourths inch baby that waste welcome it's going to be alignment and or supplement at the big babies so it's it's it's the ratio between the -- that the baby. And the weight of the baby that matters so if you think about -- most women know you know how long their children -- earth and how much they -- And you know it's considered healthy if that if that's ballot so you know -- a ten pound baby two -- 2223. Inch. You know Lance is okay but ten -- to seventeen inch is not okay. Metairie Kenner New Orleans Metairie Kenner and New Orleans. Third in the nation for fat obese children and we say that not with. What with just sadness really we must stop this trend we are shortening these kids lines. Before we get to a caller Patrick I want you to hold on. Is it I've often wondered because I know parents love their kids they want them to be helping they want to. For them to be happy or they not seeing it in their own eyes. -- their kids are so out of shape you know it's interesting because. Half of parents. Who who were surveyed in this one really large study. Looked at their overweight and obese child. And rated them as normal weight. And then another eighteen or 20%. Head healthy weight children and they rated them as underweight. So if you. Can kind of put that in your mind as the perceptions changed I mean I believe that their parents who look at their child and they think. They look healthy to me they don't look overweight. Because the size. Perception has changed over the last three decades. And it's it's a call to parents to. Reevaluate. Your thinking along these lines because the fat on the child's body is just a sign. Of a very sick child underneath. If they have access that so -- when you're you know if we you're taking them to buy clothes you conceded there's a little excess fat around the stomach. They're already overweight. Or chubby. And the next step to that is not too far away it's only another five or 10%. Of a flatness and that's just a sign that something's going wrong with your child's organs. With their liver and with their heart and with theirs their muscles that they are not able to burn the food that they eat. -- food as fuel and I think a parent to think about it that way. Food is what children eat so that they can run and play in move and that movement is essential to their growth and development. That is exactly what our collar Patrick -- is gonna say Patrick I appreciate your whole thing. Sorry you. On the day you had become. I'm 64. GA. I went to Catholic school. He had -- Twice a day. And we get ID that says the ball baseball. We can score. I -- -- That's about three. It -- all I didn't. It was my fortieth. President. Come -- eight. I weighed 469%. In my life. But seeking you. Eat candy. And chips. And get. Ctrl+Alt potential and the question stop war. And I think I think kids just -- And there are still ways latchkey. And -- economy. I appreciate you calling and Patrick. I'm sorry about that birthday present she -- but no you bring up a point and and it's but doctor southern has talked about animal talk about again about. Exercise yes and and one of those things that a parent can do. To ensure that their child has a healthy adult life is to allow them to. Engage in active play the kind of play you're talking about. Where the child she uses it and it's fun and yes it's adults supervise but it's not organized a competitive it's just that kind of play that week. Were able to do because our neighborhoods for say for example when we were young. That kinda play especially outdoors. Is is. Related to everything that will prevent obesity first of all. It's related to burn more calories. Training those muscles and and the heart and and all of the organs so that they can actually use the food is fuel that the that the child eats. Vitamin. Will. Will contribute to not only obesity but what you're talking about which is diabetes. On there's only a certain type of child who will become. Obese double also develop diabetes. The other types of children will likely will develop heart disease or hypertension. So it depends on the genetics that you inherit as to which way you're gonna go and in some cases children actually. They get to gifts they get diabetes and heart disease if there's enough. Influence from there both sides of their family. But it's key that. -- forty years old that was very disturbing for you here. But we see 1516 year olds who come in top practice who who are obese and they already have type two diabetes what's the prognosis for them. It's not very good and it's one of the reasons why you hear these statements all the time. That this is the first generation that will not outlive their parents the parents are gonna live longer than them because they're becoming. Diabetic and and getting heart disease and and and having strokes earlier and earlier. I hear the excuses from parents all the time it's it's too difficult to. Have the children. Be physically active they want to be on the computer games they want to be -- -- TV it's just a struggle it's it's a constant struggle and the parents are working on day in their tired. That is that I understand that I am a parent myself. But you have to start small just start with a half a day each weekend either the morning of the Saturday are the afternoon of the morning of the Sunday. A Sunday afternoon and take your children as a family outdoors some way whether committing. Somewhere to participate in anything that where they're moving it doesn't even have to be hard structured exercise it could be flying a kite it could be in line skating. It could be playing putt putt golf they could be anything where they're moving around. On hand these types of family parties. Which center around some outdoor activities and have balls and bats and things for the children to play with so that they will gravitate toward that and have all the children leave their cell phones at the door. And to say these cell phones and not allow for the Stanley now because we want to talk to each other week we not try one in exchange as a family. On seek out the safe parks on the weekends when you're not working. Bring your children to the park they won't actually go on whatever actually every equipment is on there and play to the heart's content the fact as the younger the child the more than wanna play. And easier it is. No I couldn't agree with you more it is and I love the idea tech a baby step have to -- You know in the kid yes so -- that bike units -- -- him and give him my phone you know what I'm in charge. And for three hours given up your phone billions. And Morgan apply. And then after a while I would imagine there's going to be a little relief. And that their -- yeah and it's funny if it once they start playing in that way they don't wanna stop and have seen this over and over again. We actually have a session went in one of our classes where we bring to topple the toys to the actual. You know it's an indoor area so even if it. Think about this even if it's raining outside you think about doing this we call imagination station and we just don't dress up close and and props like musical instruments and things that the kids can put on and soft foam balls and we just put in the Miller running even the teenagers will play with a five year olds. And they'll play Knight in shining armor and they'll play you know indoor basketball in -- just move around at the -- they're -- -- play with that as long as the cellphones in the computer games have put -- way. You know I'm fascinated by what you were saying about the parental vision of their own children. What makes it very interesting is that we are living in such a society that is. I don't consumed often by beauty. And whether -- and I say that the superficial sense of whether to movie stars or whatever role look look look look. The physical. And yet we're not seen. The physical. Of our own kid. It just it's it's ironic to me. It is and I do think that there's -- that all parents are very sensitive to. -- the self esteem of their child and you know how how they feel about themselves today blizzard learned that they can accomplish thanks to they have. On a good opinion of themselves. On but the fact is even a -- child even just an overweight child remember this is a child and only meets -- 1520 maybe thirty pounds. There -- miserably at school I guarantee -- their schoolmates don't have that perception their schoolmates think that there are overweight. It's interesting that the parents do. But the study show that actually other children don't and remembers coolest. School is is a competitive background I mean you know everyone in school competes for grades they compete for awards and in sports and activities they compete for for those trophies and those ribbons so as a lean. You know healthier kids. You know always -- excel. And the chubby you know child -- not quite. As lean as always gonna feel inferior to them and that's not. Something that we're gonna change anytime soon that's just the setting the school which is so important that at home. The parents make and their children feel important make them feel like. They are healthy. Exercise with them in the backyard teach them how to do the sports teach them how to throw how to pitch at a catch because they'll likely not participating when they have to compete with those -- children it's just too difficult for -- let's go first to sharing in New Orleans. -- -- -- -- -- -- Well I would carry -- parent have a seven year old she. And she is. Yeah I mean she she looked overweight she. You know like -- -- fixed Dominic and like her chest she had wool. -- and and she's very tall and so whenever. About her being overweight people they don't see -- tall -- so I don't really. And proportion and -- In her right in her current proportion and -- -- is currently. Her doctor never seen -- say anything she goes. And try -- would -- it let you -- Eat eat it for her height issue at overweight she is. Cheap for what that meant. She's only seven year rule and she -- OK so. Have to actually do the calculations to tell you in terms of what her her height and her height the weight index. And I can do that and and and I can actually give you call back on that -- okay but listen even he even if I could do that that's not a diagnosis election Stan grant what you would do that what you would do with that information. This is very important. You would go back to your pediatrician or family position and you would say he -- this is what her -- -- -- could you plot that. On the growth -- and tell me if she is overweight or obese. Sometimes when the -- out the children are young and you're childish on seven so 567 years old. The pediatrician family physician won't say anything right away. It's because that's a period of rapid growth. So this might be temporary for your -- she is tall for her age. Well it could be but this but for me. The fact that you actually noticed the rolls around her stomach. That's suggest that you know maybe she's she's tipping on the other side. It's not call for alarm it's a call for you to be just cautious. And work with the pediatrician camera position to. Ask him to track her over like a year period like every three months they'll win in track and see if there's a trend that she's that. The height staying the same but the weight keeps going up that's when it's that's when it's alarming now that said this is just think about this way. If she's very physically active and she's eating healthy. And you were in your very comfortable with that. You know beat you you can relax because remember that that is just a sign that the child is perhaps not engaging in a physical activity. Are eating healthy enough foods but if you know on on the on the other side that that's the case this may be a temporary this is this is actually called. And my grandmother used to say children grow grow out before they grow up. And she's likely it beginning to enter puberty. And when they begin to inner and QB takes a few years understand that doesn't mean -- -- it is not going to be an adolescent tomorrow but it takes a few years. And when they just began to literate they tend to. On they put on weight because the bones in the muscles the demand that extra weight to grow. On the butt beat you know worked with the worked with a pediatrician and and you need to be cautious about how much food you serve her. Make sure that she's eating an appropriate amount of food. How are the other day in she she does seem to outline a lot of food and -- -- I don't know I'm giving her too much I don't know I don't want to be hungry line in the she's hungry. And he'll bat it. Yeah well well yet and he's. Well the thing as he here's something to consider OK it's usually a portion is usually the child's decides a look at your child's decides. And we -- surfer. -- a fist size of everything you cook even if it's up and she doesn't want like let's say you do Brussels sprouts that she doesn't wanna serve and on her plate. And asked her to take three bites and that she takes three bites asked to degrade it on AB CD your app integrates and an app that she doesn't have to eat it again. But chances are unity serve EP serve a different -- but not to her every time -- file when that she likes. If she if she wants seconds. -- after she's hungry encourage -- to eat the fruits to vegetables and the lean. On meters seafood. On try not to give -- seconds of the white starchy type foods which which to -- -- high just don't -- -- on the need for energy especially she's playing an outdoors -- she's in sports but you know. The potatoes the breads you know those types of things -- even Aaron those those her. Those are what we call high icy mix foods found that trigger sugar that trigger hunger response and you wanna try to. Make sure she's eating healthy fats and the healthy proteins that's gonna help keepers say -- Make sure she had breakfast in the morning. If children. Children eat breakfast in the morning and breakfast should always have a lean protein. OK so that's like I'm some kind of animal protein like like on. Thomas in which is like that which is beans are like a you know to each string cheese like -- a lower fat cheese it's a -- low fat -- -- string cheese is just naturally low fat is good. Turkey bacon which is low in fat is good and then fruits. On and then you could serve that with oatmeal or some whole grain cereal make sure it's whole grain but if they eat breakfast. They'll be less hungry for lunch they'll do better in school. And they'll be and should be less likely to be overweight so that's another to Atlanta and no snacking after 8 o'clock in this is something you can enforce. After after eight is too late they should not the way they can have water sort -- just some tips. And then and well -- is yes so I hit. So you might wanna delay dessert so here you go. Freight feeder dinner and then say okay we're gonna have dessert and about an hour later let's go full walk such after dinner try to get it to do some light activity. You don't want to run outside after she's just been cheating. But if you know she goes outside and you know plays a little bit he'd go for a walk and then hampered dessert. Com an hour after -- that -- may not want that late snacks and think about that makes the dessert is healthy and there's some great options for dessert you know that. There's low fat whip cream you can put it on strawberries you can put -- on. Fruit and on these the the look that up putting some of the -- there's lots of great options for sweet desserts for children that are low. Naturally low in sugar and the low fat -- -- just as good as the -- a fat versions you like -- always so sweet to call. He's done. For great you know as a grandparent that if my -- my credentials as they come over for a walk. -- -- -- play thought about it you know soccer you know they love Apple's -- and they come on. They get an apple and they don't -- a chocolate -- are they not do get it sometimes you know -- like -- -- sometimes it's okay draw there yeah. You know they come to say you know my -- -- -- -- we do you know. But the question I have is that I found this to be. Really a father to me about my children's school. No matter how much he was vigilant at home it matches that have an obligation. My children literally provoked with Coca-Cola and schools to do certain things and I have a question. How impact for an instant access that -- -- children and -- as. Still hormones steroids amount -- food and on voluntary. So this chemicals in our food that we are now being an up and lines to just speak out to be a little bit facetious. And and it in immunizations. Children are. Being they're getting more and more and more and more. How much impact awards they have actually on and antibiotics and Medicaid. I. Only hope. You got some great questions a little and let her start answering and -- I always appreciate your -- -- okay so not to pick on Coca-Cola but all of the soft drink companies -- -- very. Talented at getting your child's attention everyone knows that. So it's very. Much up to the parent. To try to offset those messages as much as they can't and one of the ways you can do this is by labeling foods as either grow tall foods are not at all foods. So Coca-Cola is a -- feet. You know sprite their drinks they're fun that you can have one of them every night and then maybe with a mile maybe is a treat it's fun food. But it has no nutritional value what so ever it will give the children calories so that they can run because calories -- what allows a child to run. No nutritional value not a group -- so. If they have a Coke and you have a strawberries and the strawberries at hotel food you want that's what I do you want to go do not gonna -- -- -- just try it it may work for you second. Every question you asked about what type of on medications children take when they're young a what type of additives in the food. Al how does that contribute to chronic disease obesity things like that answer is we still don't know. However the answers are coming out very slowly. We do know that the introduction of steroids at a young age is associated with weight gain what we don't know is if that weight gain as permanent. So that's something that I want the mothers who have children who -- on steroids for whatever condition I think as miss the most prevalent discussed this with a pediatrician family physician. The second thing is what's in the food there's so many different chemicals in the food. And on message I'd like to give you this comes from my friend doctor Chris is that when you're selecting food try to select food that's closest to nature. If you collect if you select food for your children closest to -- you'll always. You know select those at a fresher and it doesn't always have to be fresh for investor was the -- know that they're expensive. And then I'll always available but even frozen fruits and -- was as long as they don't have additives can be healthy read the label in the first three. Words are four syllable words containing cycling or some chemical formula. It's processed. It's over uncooked over and manipulated in a way that makes it less healthy. Select those foods first ingredient is the food the second ingredient is water the third ingredient might be some fiber or some vitamins. To select those that have nutritional value you don't -- -- calories and things aren't nutritious. Arnold in -- I think you have a good question on this. Hello Arnold and I made him do good. And fuel and our Arab world where the camera. -- -- -- -- -- -- Indeed we want the -- is. Not. I can't go out and it is being. And I wanna do is not by what is good about not doing a little and it -- and -- 100 no I think. It. You know you brought up something that I wanna tell all parents I know you're overwhelmed and I know that this -- heart and my heart goes out to out raise two children they're grown now. Remember it's these baby steps don't try to you know. Get a good completely dispel all these unhealthy foods that that your child doesn't like. Better yet try to. Given much choice of several different things and and one and one is unhealthy and perhaps he may choose one of those healthy ones say OK well you know. Here he -- this is what we can have the lunch we can hand you know we can go and get at some French Fries or we can have some strawberries are we can have. You know low fat. Some your salad and given choices and try to. Convince him use that grows tall this story that I told you about and try to convince him to think about. Feeding his muscles. OK as opposed to just satisfying his hunger in his taste or his cravings you know. Compliment him when he runs or when he plays sports on and say wow are you doing that really well it must be the strawberries you -- must be that's how would you rate. And just gradually do this and every time you see. Him and -- assume it's -- him maybe it's her. Select something healthy applaud. On and praised them for the healthy selection and that that on he he did. Don't talk about weight and parents don't talk about wait don't use the word overweight don't use a word obesity used the words this is healthy. This is nutritious this is gonna make you grow -- this is gonna make your muscles work better. You're going to be a better athlete that's what's that that's what's important children this is gonna make for the girls this is gonna make you -- pretty this can make you Smart and you know that is the very quickly thank you Arnold before we -- amber in New Orleans amber. Hey how you dot com I had the egg hunt and then let it out as picky either. I've got seven years hole and he belly and you eat it like it might try every and he had. -- -- How and that it was out there. A PTE. OK amber and I let her answer real quick as a run on time okay. I think variety is the key on even though you you know that this child only get you the -- gravy still prepared. At least two different types of festivals and put two different types of fruit on the table. On and if you can just given to. Put some really nice lean protein and that rice and gravy so either some local seafood shrimp or crab. Even crawfish those are really. Good foods high in the healthy facts very high in the healthy fats the local fish -- snapper with that in the rice and gravy. On also you can make pizzas with festivals and they won't even know their their -- and really find. And maybe he'll enjoy that -- think great ideas I really appreciate you calling amber I wanna thank god doctor Melinda southern so much in her final word is. Fast food only once a week. And dinner together as a family at least twice a week that will make a difference.