Childhood obesity is a serious health problem in Australia

NewsGuard 100/100 Score

New research to be published soon by a University of Sydney medical team, shows that childhood obesity is a serious health problem in Australia.

Professor Michael Booth, co-director of the University of Sydney's Centre for Overweight and Obesity, said teenagers were already showing signs of serious illness caused by their weight.

Dr Booth and his colleagues are conducting a study of 15-year-olds, and preliminary results show an alarming number of health problems previously only detected in adults.

"We've collected blood samples from 500 15-year-olds to look at health markers like cholesterol levels, blood pressure, triglycerides, insulin levels, glucose levels and something called c-reactive protein, which is an indicator of vascular damage, and liver enzymes which give an indication of liver cell damage associated with weight.

"We still have to make some adjustments, but overall we've found they are all frighteningly high.

"A proportion of 15-year- olds are already showing significant signs of organ damage associated with being overweight." Dr Booth said the increasing level of Type 2 diabetes would result in many children developing potentially deadly diseases by the age of 30 or 40.

"For kids with signs of insulin resistance, if they don't improve their health by their 30s they will be suffering all the morbidities that people used to suffer in their 60s, such as amputations, blindness, liver failure, kidney failure and heart disease," Dr Booth said.

"For others, by the time they reach their 30s and early 40s there will be lines wrapping around the block in front of hospitals of people needing to have liver transplants. I really don't think the magnitude of the problem has settled into the minds of government yet."

Dr Booth's results will be presented to the NSW Government later this year.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.

You might also like...
New study reveals brain clearance of toxins is reduced during sleep and anesthesia