Obesity can be defined as an excessive accumulation of body fat which results in individuals being 20% or more heavier than their ideal body weight. Overweight is defined as any weight in excess of the normal range.
Obese teenagers often have disturbed patterns of eating. Some of the common ones are listed below:
- Consumption of high-energy and low nutrient foods instead of low-energy and high nutrient foods, i.e., eating a donut rather than a piece of fruit
- Interpretation of diverse feelings of situations as reasons to eat
- Susceptibility to eating cues unrelated to physiological needs
- Guilt related to eating under any circumstances
- Lack of understanding of bodily needs for nourishment
- Unwillingness to eat with others, including family members
- Lack of structure in eating patterns
- Night eating
- Binge eating
- Eating only in the latter part of the day after starvation in the first part
- Nausea described as connected with eating in the early part of the day
- Lack of any feeling of control over their food intake
- Eating rapidly and indiscriminately
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