Childhood obesity and eating disorders rise during pandemic

A pediatrician is sounding the alarm as eating disorders and obesity problems have increased in children and adolescents since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s a bit of a disaster,” said Dr. Julie St-Pierre, pediatrician at clinic 180 in Montreal.

According to her, the lack of physical activity, but also junk food and excessive sugar consumption are the cause.

“We have a lot more consultations and a lot more seriousness also in the cases which are referred to us”, worried the Dre St Pierre.

The consultation requests are indeed skyrocketing at the clinic. Family doctors, CLSCs and schools need help.

“We have a school that called us, desperate, saying ‘we have a kid in elementary school who has developed so much stress that he eats at night. Parents and management were very worried that obesity was getting worse, ”said St Pierre.

However, this clinic, which has shown even more its importance in times of pandemic, risks closing its doors if the government does not come to help it financially.

The clinic, which follows 1,000 children and adolescents, would need $ 350,000 per year.

“We discover here, sometimes, in the blood test which must accompany the disease, a multitude of complications that would be overlooked. If we change people’s lifestyle, we could improve chronic diseases by 80%, ”believes the pediatrician.

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