Childhood obesity is an epidemic that is affecting the lives our youth. It has drawn national attention by many. Even first lady Michelle Obama has started a campaign aimed to address this problem. According to the article Michelle on a Mission, “the initiative is about families making manageable changes that fit with their schedules, budgets, need, and tastes” (2010).
There are two main reasons for my interest in the topic of childhood obesity. First, as a future elementary teacher, I am interested in learning about some of the issues facing our youth. As a volunteer at an elementary school, I’ve been seeing some of the effects of this epidemic on the children. I’m also interested in this topic on a more personal level because I have a niece that suffers from being obese. I would like to know what factors may cause childhood obesity and the various techniques to help her with her weight battle. I also have two children of my own. Although they are at a healthy weight, I want to make sure that they continue to stay within their weight range and don’t suffer from the effects of obesity. I began gathering information on childhood obesity through the online databases available through Ferris State University's FLITE library. The first database I began searching under was Academic OneFiles. I searched using the keywords "childhood obesity" hoping to get an idea of what sort of articles were going to be available. This search rendered 7,166 different results. With so many articles to choose from, I decided to narrow my research to full text articles. This narrowing resulted in 1,192 journals that I was able to sift through. After seeing all the results for full text articles, I decided that it would be best to narrow my search again and see if I could find articles relating to more specific areas within my topic. I then began searching under the Health Sciences (Sage Full-Text) database since I knew that any articles I found would have full-text versions accessible online. Using the keywords "childhood", "obesity" and “causes”, I located 330 full-text articles and another 260 articles when I used "childhood", "obesity" and “affects." After conducting several similar searches, I was able to locate a variety of articles that I felt contained vital information for this essay. Because this epidemic is on a rise, I wanted to find relevant information that is not outdated. Most of the articles were from 2006 and newer. There were however, a few articles that I found that were slightly older but still within the last 12 years. After scanning through the databases, I found 11 articles that I wanted to use in my bibliographic essay. I choose these articles because they had a great deal of information in them. All the articles information needed for these five areas: 1.Childhood obesity: what is it?
2.What causes it
My goal for this essay is to give a thorough overview of the professional sites and articles that I have found on the topic of childhood obesity and what they contribute on the areas listed above.
Childhood Obesity: What Is It?
Obesity or overweight is based on body mass index or BMI. BMI is calculated by taking the weight in kilograms and dividing that by height in meters squared therefore, BMI = kg/m². In the article written by Doyeon and Kravitsz (2007)(¶3), being overweight (pre-obesity) is defined as having a BMI of 25-29.9 kg and being obese means having a BMI of greater than or equal to 30.0 kg. According to Philipsen (2008) (¶5) on the other hand, “Age-specific percentiles are used instead of BMI to classify children into weight categories because children’s body fat changes as they grow”. A child is thereby considered to be obese if they are at or above the 95th percentile for their age. This information was retrieved from The Journal of Perinatal Education. In the article written by...