Rates of pediatric (0-14 years) overweight and obesity have increased dramatically over the past three decades in Italy and in many other countries and obesity is now the most common childhood disease. Childhood obesity is emerging as a global epidemic (pandemia) that has profound health and psycho-social consequences: as body weight rises, there are a number of other diseases that are associated with it and many overweight children become overweight adults. Although clear definitions (internationally accepted body mass index cut-off points) of pediatric weight problems exist, a large percentage of overweight and obese children and adolescents remain undiagnosed. Identification of overweight and obese patients is the first step in addressing this growing epidemic because early intervention may be more effective. Diagnosis of pediatric obesity, epidemiology, loss of control eating disorder and early feeding experiences are topics of this article.
Keywords: Obesity; Childhood; Eating Disorders; Psychoanalysis