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Arch Hellen Med, 34(1), January-February 2017, 27-31


The role of eating habits in childhood obesity

V. Karavida,1 D. Pesxos,2 G. Vrionis,1 A. Euaggelou2
1Department of Preschool Education, Technical Educational Institute of Epirus, Ioannina,
2Functional/Clinical-Laboratory Section, Department of Medicine, University of Ioannina, Ioannina, Greece

Childhood obesity is one of the most common eating disorders and the prevalence of overweight and obese children is growing rapidly worldwide, in both developed and developing countries. Obesity in the early years of a child's life is particularly hazardous, both because of its impact on the physical and psychosocial development of the child, and because individuals who have developed obesity, even for a while, face difficulties in treatment and in maintaining a healthy body weight. The changes that have taken place generally in people's lifestyles play an important role in the development of childhood obesity. The omission of breakfast, the change to a less nutritious diet, reduction in the frequency of meals taken as a family, a reduced number of daily meals and an increase in the size of food portions are key factors that contribute to weight gain by children. People acquire in early childhood the essential behavior that follows them for the rest of their lives. Consequently, the development of bad eating habits by children usually persists all through their adolescence and adult life.

Key words: Breakfast, Childhood obesity, Dietary habits, Portion size, Sugary drinks.

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