Nutrition & BMI
It is essential to eat a fresh, healthy, and balanced diet in order to maintain a healthy weight and prevent chronic disease. Numerous studies have shown a clear link between the amount and variety of fruits and vegetables consumed and rates of chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and cancer. In childhood and adolescence, healthy eating is key for proper development and the prevention of health problems such as obesity, dental caries, and iron deficiency. Further, establishing good dietary patterns at a young age can reduce the risk of many chronic diseases later in life.
Body Mass Index, or BMI, is calculated from an individual’s height and weight to produce a measure of body fatness, which is directly correlated with health. Maintaining a healthy body weight decreases one’s risk for disease and premature death. Being overweight or obese substantially increases the risk for coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, some forms of cancer, and certain musculoskeletal disorders, such as osteoarthritis. It is especially important for children and adolescents to maintain a healthy body weight. Obese and overweight youth are more likely to have risk factors associated with cardiovascular diseases, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and Type 2 diabetes. Additionally, obese children and adolescents are more likely to become obese as adults. Losing weight helps to prevent and control multiple chronic diseases and improves quality of life.