Chief analyst Julie Bernier says a lot of attention has been paid to being overweight and obese as precursors to developing physical health problems such as Type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular problems.
But this report takes a rare look at body weight vis-a-vis self-esteem in childhood. Previous studies have found that low self-esteem as a youngster can predict poor mental health in adulthood.
Yeah, we all know how being fat leads to developing physical health problems....FUCKING NOT ALWAYS, ASSHATS. Generalizations do not fit everyone in the whole wide world, and very seldom even fit a small percentage of the world's population.
As for low self-esteem as a youngster leading to mental health problems as an adult? All I have to say on that is - "YA THINK?"
"Up to now in the literature, there has been a lot of emphasis on the fact that body weight problems could lead to a lot of chronic disease ... and now, it's a complement to see that it even puts you more at risk for low self-esteem, which in turn would put you at risk for mental health problems."
Body weight problems could lead to a lot of chronic disease. Could being the operative word here, researchers/doctors. What part of correlation is not causation do you not understand?
Kids at the ages of 10 and 11 completed a four-item scale that assessed their overall self-esteem, rating statements such as "In general, I like the way I am" and "Overall I have a lot to be proud of."
They were surveyed twice more, two years and four years later. Assessments about whether someone was overweight or obese were derived from height and weight measurements reported by the person most knowledgeable about the child, such as a parent or guardian.
Researchers who studied the data found that children who were obese in the beginning had almost twice the odds of reporting low self-esteem four years later, compared with normal weight children.
Bernier explained that it's been known for some time that there's a relationship between body weight and self-esteem.
This doesn't surprise me one little bit. What with all the media hype about being fat and how bad it is for everyone, and all the bullying of fat kids by other kids, their parents, their teachers, their doctors, etc, is it any wonder that fat kids have less self-esteem than kids who aren't fat? Even if fat kids have loving parents who don't expect them to be thin, the rest of society sure as hell isn't going to leave them alone, and parents can't always over-ride everything kids hear outside of their homes.
And in all of this research, not one mention is made about bullying fat kids having any bearing on their self-esteem, nor is there any mention of how the media's portrayal of fat has any bearing on it. Lots of talk about how much time they spend in front of the TV/computer, their parents' education, kids' school performance, kids' amount/quality of physical activity, etc influences a kid's self-esteem, but bullying, not a mention of that at all (evidently, bullying is a very small part of what influences one's self-esteem, and not an important one at that).
According to this study, gender also has a bearing on a child's self-esteem (boys are less likely to have issues than girls - gee, I wonder why that is?). And physical activity - well, if they participate in physical activity 5 to 7 times a week, kids have better self-esteem than if they don't participate (but nothing is said about why kids may not want to participate in physical activity more often - could it go right back to the bullying factor?).
And all they can recommend is a "healthy" diet and exercise to either keep kids from getting fat, or make fat kids thin. Yeah, that just works so well - how many failures of that shit have we seen in the last 5 to 10 years? More than I want to count, and more than should have been implemented (since they haven't worked for adults for more years than I've been alive, why the fuck do they think this shit will work for kids?).
Why the hell can't kids be kids and enjoy their childhood, no matter what size body they have?