Preventing obesity in children requires healthy living conditions

29/08/2020 12:47

Berlin - Behavioral preventive approaches are not enough to do something against obesity in children and adolescents under today's obese living conditions. Successful obesity prevention primarily requires measures to prevent the situation, which must be initiated by society and politics. This is shown by the scientific studies on which the guideline “Therapy and Prevention of Obesity in Children and Adolescents” presented today is based.

The evidence-based S3 guideline was developed by 40 experts from 16 medical-scientific societies, professional associations and other organizations. Leading the way were the Working Group on Obesity in Child and Adolescent Ages (AGA) of the German Obesity Society (DAG) and the German Society for Child and Adolescent Medicine (DGKJ).

The guidance and training of affected children and their families with the aim of changing their personal lifestyle in multimodal obesity therapy can also be promising under certain circumstances. This applies in particular to the education of children of primary school age and especially their families. Nevertheless, the almost 80-page guideline states that the “therapeutic effects achieved are rather low” and “often do not meet the expectations of those affected”.

According to experts, children and young people are most likely to benefit from outpatient services. “That is why the recommendation 'outpatient before inpatient' clearly applies to obesity therapy,” said Susanna Wiegand, former spokeswoman for the AGA and since October Vice President of the German Obesity Society. However, there are too few places for these concepts, according to which the child is cared for in the midst of family, school and friends.


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