For Contemporary Pediatrics, Dr Bobby Lazzara discusses a recent study published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine that looked at whether asthma in childhood contributed to the development of childhood obesity.
As pediatricians we are all too aware of our nation’s struggle with childhood overweight and obesity. Approximately 1 of every 5 children that we see in the office every day is obese. Despite tremendous efforts to reverse this trend, it is clear we are in this battle for the long haul.
Although there is debate surrounding the definition of metabolic X syndrome in pediatrics and there are few long-term studies of outcomes in children with metabolic syndrome, pediatric metabolic syndrome needs to be on the radar of all pediatricians interested in ensuring a healthy adult life for their patients.
Testing glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) appears to predict children’s diabetes risk as well as fasting plasma glucose and 2-hour postload plasma glucose, according to a study on more than 2000 American Indian children.
By addressing the root problem of obesity with structured programs, providers can help patients lose weight and very possibly avoid expensive chronic illnesses as a result. Employers and payers should incentivize healthy weight by paying for obesity care and treatment, potentially reaping substantial savings in the long term.