Parents, take note: Dental care can help curb obesity in children | fitness | Hindustan Times
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Parents, take note: Dental care can help curb obesity in children

A new study has found a direct relationship between poor dental health in children leading to a rise in BMI (Body Mass Index) and extra body fat.

fitness Updated: Nov 09, 2017 16:22 IST
Indo Asian News Service
Dental care,Obesity,Health
Children who had a higher amount of caries bacteria also had higher BMI and worse eating habits.(Shutterstock)

Worried about your child’s obesity problems? It’s high time you curbed his love for sugary drinks and junk food. A little focus on dental care may prevent your child gaining excess weight, says a new study. The study found a direct relationship between poor dental health leading to a rise in BMI (Body Mass Index) and extra body fat.

“Weight can be a sensitive subject, but if you talk about eating behaviours alongside dental health, you are looking at the issue from a different angle,” said Louise Arvidsson, a doctoral student at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. “The question is whether a healthy diet can have an effect on young children. In the past, there has been a lot of focus on physical activity and mental health in children.”

The researchers reviewed the eating behaviour, body fat and dental health of 271 small children. The height, weight and food intake of the children were kept under observation for one day and then checked for the prevalence of cariogenic micro-organisms in saliva. The results found that the children who had higher amount of caries bacteria also had higher BMI and worse eating habits.

The children were asked to consume wholegrain products, such as 400-500 grams of fruit and vegetables per day, fish two to three times a week and a low intake of sugar and saturated fat. Arvidsson mentioned in the thesis, conducted at the University’s Sahlgrenska Academy, that with good food comes increased self-esteem, better relationships with friends and fewer emotional problems.

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First Published: Nov 09, 2017 16:21 IST