Processed food making kids sick, finds study

Changing food habits have resulted in altered immune mechanism in children.File Photo  

Bad food habits is taking a toll on our children, warn doctors. A group of doctors have published a multi-centric study to drive home the ill effects of moving away from healthy eating habits and opting for easy-to-use and widely accessible processed food.

“The rising prevalence of paediatric inflammatory bowel disease (P-IBD) in India is a result of changing lifestyle and food habits in children, especially during the early stages of life. These changing food habits have resulted in altered immune mechanism in children,” said Dr. Nishant Wadhwa, co-author of the study and paediatric gastroenterologist at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.

He added that the study has for the first time outlined the baseline profile in paediatric population with inflammatory bowel disease.

In P-IBD, the child’s own immune system turns against his /her intestine, resulting in morbidity and long-term treatment.

The study found that two by third (60.5 per cent) of the children in this series were suffering from growth failure.

Advocating for healthy and well balanced diet, rich in nutrients, doctors assert that this could go a long way in promoting the health of children.

This multi-centric study was recently conducted in seven centres across India on 221 children suffering from inflammatory bowel disease. The result of this study has been published in January 2015 edition of Indian Journal of Gastroenterology.

There were two centres from North India (including Sir Ganga Ram Hospital), four centers from Southern India and one centre from Central India that participated in this study.

“In this multi-centric study, we found that children were majorly affected by two forms of inflammatory bowel disease. Majority 55.2 per cent were suffering from Crohn’s Disease. In this, any part of the child’s gastrointestinal tract can be adversely affected. Other 42 per cent consisted of children who suffered from ulcerative colitis. In this form of IBD, the child’s large intestine is affected,” said Dr. Wadhwa.

Growth failure in P-IBD is almost universal and is attributable to multiple nutritional deficiencies. These children suffer on account of intestinal disease. Dietary therapy, which includes elementary feeds is useful for Crohn’s Disease. In ulcerative colitis, nutritional and multi-vitamin supplementation is essential.

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Printable version | May 9, 2021 12:34:47 AM |

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