top of page

Childhood obesity

Tālofa vessel of honor! Let every way masquerading as JESUS or the HOLY SPIRIT be judged today. Let a shield of fire surround your house and your beloved ones. May the word you need reach you.

  1. What is childhood obesity?

  2. The spiritual causes of childhood obesity

  3. Scientific causes of childhood obesity

  4. The consequences of childhood obesity

  5. What to do

" Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace." (Psalm 144:12, NIV)

" Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true GOD, and JESUS CHRIST, whom you have sent. " (John 17:3, NIV)

1. What is childhood obesity?

The World Health Organization defines overweight and obesity as an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat, which can be harmful to health. Doctors and nutritionists refer to the body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC) and body shape curves established according to age and gender. Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of weight for height used to estimate overweight and obesity in adults. It is weight divided by the square of height, expressed in kg/m2. A person is overweight when his or her body mass index (BMI) is greater than 25. They are obese when their BMI is over 30. Doctors agree that obesity is a complex chronic disease.

The number of obese children and adolescents in the world continues to grow. Between 1975 and 2016, their number increased tenfold. In 2019, 38 million children under the age of 5 were overweight or obese. Childhood obesity affects infants, children, and adolescents. In some countries, one in five children is born obese and one in three adolescents is overweight. The probability that an obese child will remain obese into adulthood ranges from 20-50% before puberty to 50-70% after puberty. The causes differ, but no social class is spared. Rich, poor, intermediate, everyone knows or has known someone who is overweight or obese.

2. The spiritual causes of childhood obesity

GOD is not the author of suffering and he does not rejoice in misfortune. I will not say that this is always the case, but it happens that demons or sorcerers' attacks cause or facilitate obesity in a person. Not all diseases are demonic, but a significant number of diseases are (Luke 6:17-18, Luke 9:42). The devil does not love anyone. He has no mercy on anyone, not even children. He seeks only to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). That is why we must feed on the Word, exercise spiritual gifts, and arm ourselves with the weapons of GOD (Matthew 4:4, Colossians 3:16-17, 1 Corinthians 12:8-10, John 8:32, Luke 10:19, Ephesians 6:10-18).

3. Scientific causes of childhood obesity

Scientifically, obesity and overweight are caused by an energy imbalance between calories consumed and expended. There are multiple causes:

  • Medical causes: hormonal abnormality (endocrine obesity), genetic disease, brain tumor, autoimmune diseases, etc.

  • Side effects of medical treatment: anti-epileptic drugs, psychotropic drugs or corticosteroids (iatrogenic obesity), etc.

  • Genetic predisposition: parental overweight or obesity.

  • Predisposition during pregnancy: a mother who smokes, has poorly controlled gestational diabetes or gains too much weight, which favors the baby's weight gain and then the risk of being overweight.

  • Parenting style: lack of attention and involvement during meals, rewarding with food, punishing with no food, non-diversified menus, etc.

  • Lack of sleep: the body produces less of the appetite-regulating hormones that are produced during sleep.

  • Poor eating habits: snacking, irregular meals, or meals inappropriate to the age and needs of the child (or adolescent).

  • Lack of physical activity and excessive sedentary lifestyle: more and more hours in front of screens (computer, tablet, phone, video games), less travel, etc.

  • Dietary imbalance: excessive consumption of fatty, sugary, salty, or industrial foods.

  • Eating disorders: hyperphagia, bulimia, etc.

  • Psychological factors: parental neglect, depression, loneliness, school bullying, sexual abuse; verbal abuse, poor grief management, or a bored child (case of precocious children).

  • Pedophilia, early marriage, child prostitution: forcing young girls to eat to make them look older so as not to arouse suspicion

  • Cultural influence: in some countries, weight gain is considered a sign of material prosperity.

  • Under-information and obsession with financial gain at the expense of health: misleading advertisements, lack of control, modification of the genetic structure of animals and plants, the influence of lobby groups, etc.

4. The consequences of childhood obesity

Medically, obesity increases the risk of diabetes, adult obesity, premature death, and disability. Obesity can lead to breathing difficulties, musculoskeletal disorders, increased risk of fractures, high blood pressure, early markers of cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance, and psychological problems. Like adults, obese adolescents frequently experience excessive sweating and skin fungus.

Socially, unfortunately, obesity is used as an excuse for various forms of discrimination, exclusion, bullying, verbal abuse, and so on. It is a means used by the devil and his minions to sow low self-esteem, depression, poverty and other diseases.

6. What to do

It is cowardly to make a child feel guilty because he is obese. No one chooses the family into which they will be born. GOD has given parents the responsibility to raise and educate their children. Every parent should recognize that they have a responsibility before GOD to do the best they can for their child. Doing the best you involve: loving, praying, commending yourself to GOD, forgiving yourself, repenting if necessary, being accompanied if necessary, not judging, accompanying, educating, raising awareness, encouraging, and celebrating every step forward. In short, team up with the HOLY SPIRIT.

Losing weight quickly is risky for your health. The goal of parents of obese children should not be to make them lose weight but to help them grow without gaining more weight, to gradually regain a weight appropriate to their size. In addition to good habits and physical activities, the child should be involved without feeling guilty. The child should understand the importance of these changes and have the opportunity to talk about them and make suggestions.

Prayer is a formidable weapon. GOD wants us to pray: for ourselves and for others. He wants us to be examples and instruments for those around us, and those to whom he will send us. Prayer is not the only weapon. Our attitudes and habits count. How do you eat? How do you eat in your house? What are your children's hobbies? Do you have quality time with them? What is your attitude towards children and parents of overweight children? What do your children say to their overweight friends? What do you cook in your restaurant? Would you like to intercede for a family today?

** Tālofa = Good morning in Samoa (Polynesia)



bottom of page