The hospital of children at UZ Brussels University Hospital, which is named “Kidz Health Castle,” became the first paediatric obesity centre in Belgium to be recognised by the European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO) as one of the Collaborating Centres for Obesity Management Paediatric Section.
The prevalence of overweight as well as obesity among children as well as adolescents aged 5-19 years has increased from just 4 percent in 4 percent in 1975 to just over 18 percent in 2016 in Brussels.
Worldwide, the maximum number of people suffering from obesity has tripled since 1975, as per the World Health Organisation (WHO), which has since also recognised it as a chronic disease.
Along with this, professor Inge Gies, head of the Kidz Health Castle department as well as responsible for the children’s obesity clinic, mentioned in a press release, “Once a child is obese, the chance that it disappears spontaneously is very small, and the child has a very high chance of remaining obese in adulthood. So a child does not just grow out of it.”
She added in the statement, “The first 1,000 days of life are very decisive for fat cell programming, as well as this has an impact on the rest of life. Hence the great importance of an early approach.”
“Up to 20 percent of children facing obesity already show complications of rising in weight at an early age (such as elevated cholesterol, high blood pressure, fatty liver). The psychosocial component should not be overlooked either: a third of obese children are bullied, for example.”
The European Association for the Study of Obesity is a leading European organisation pooling expertise on obesity research as well as policy.