Medical & Developmental Health

This section provides the latest news on relevant childrens’ health topics, including results of medical studies, with comments by regional pediatric specialists.

Child Obesity Risks Death at Early Age

By Dr. Adam Smith, Pediatric Center

A rare study that tracked thousands of children through adulthood found the heaviest youngsters were more than twice as likely as the thinnest to die prematurely, before age 55, of illness or a self-inflicted injury. Youngsters with a condition called pre-diabetes were at almost double the risk of dying before 55, and those with high blood pressure were at some increased risk. But obesity was the factor most closely associated with an early death, researchers said.

The study, published Thursday in The New England Journal of Medicine, analyzed data gathered from Pima and Tohono O’odham Indians, whose rates of obesity and  type-2 diabetes soared decades before weight problems became widespread among other Americans. It is one of the largest studies to have tracked children for several decades after detailed information on weight and risk factors like high cholesterol were gathered. Read more…

Posted in Medical & Developmental Health

7 Ideas for healthy snacking for kids based on Food Rules

Jane Brody again has another immensely readable and helpful column in the New York Times that summarizes Michael Pollan’s newest book, Food Rules.

The article is worth a read once a week, or maybe even once a day, because our entire culture really is constantly reminding us to break those “rules” of good nutrition. “Have a syrupy drink. Munch a crunchy oily snack. Eat a sugary cookie. Maybe just one. You deserve it.” The best parent is fighting a continuous battle to teach good eating habits at least while the kids are at home, not too raise scrawny lactose-free vegans who can’t eat anything and look like it, but to raise kids who develop a taste for things that are good for them, rather than those that just fill them up fast. Read more…

Posted in Medical & Developmental Health