Poor diets in children are the cause of multiple health problems that affect kids today. The research on dietary trends shows that children are particularly consuming an unhealthy diet. Although there is more awareness about the issue now than there was before, there is no significant improvement in diets.
According to current research, there are a variety of factors that contribute to unhealthy diets in children. One of the biggest reasons many children consume calorie-rich food with little nutrition is because of food labeling.
At the moment, there are more choices in food and beverages that target children of different ages. As a consequence, most of the parents or caregivers are unable to decide the healthiest among all.
The confusion increases as the nutrition labels on most products give incomplete or misleading information. Many times, a particular item does not enlist some of the ingredients which can be harmful.
Others use names for ingredients which many people are not familiar with. Hence, they are buying beverages without knowing what is actually in them.
In addition to this issue, the presence of sugary items in children’s diets is one of the primary reasons for lack of nutrition. Foods, specifically milks and juices, are marketed as healthy but in reality are only full of sugar.
Nutrition wise, they offer no benefits or contain any nutrients. The consistent intake of sugar in children then leads to weight gain and increases the risk of multiple health issues in the future.
Now, a study by the Imperial College London shows other results of poor diets in children. The researchers looked at the decline of health in terms of height and weight in kids around the globe.
According to the findings of the study, which appear in the journal The Lancet, the decline is due to poor nutrition. Due to unhealthy meals or lack of nutritional food, the global heights now vary by twenty centimeters across countries.
This means that the average heights of many countries decreased overtime including sub-Saharan African and Asian countries. Additionally, even some Western countries such as the UK have had a downfall in heights.
On the other hand, a number of nations such as South Korea and China had improvements and an increase in heights. However, overall the dietary trends were largely associated with poor health outcomes in children.
Along with heights, the weight of the children was also different across countries. Children who had poor nutrition usually did not grow taller but had significant weight gain.
This further adds to the evidence on the increase in global childhood obesity. Due to the prevalence of unhealthy diets or lack of access to food, most kids are not growing properly.
Instead, they are gaining more weight than their BMI requirement and more likely to have health diseases in the future.
The leading investigator of the new study, Dr. Andrea Rodriguez Martinez, states that the findings show a clear decline in children’s health. She further adds that they also highlight the need for better policies for easier accessibility to healthy food.