Obesity is a multifaceted chronic condition with several contributing causes, including biological risk factors, socioeconomic status, health literacy, and numerous environmental influences. Of particular concern are the increasing rates of obesity in children and adolescents, as rates of obesity in youth in the United States have tripled within the last three decades. Youth from historically disadvantaged backgrounds tend to have higher rates of obesity compared to other groups. Adolescents often do not meet intake recommendations for certain food groups and nutrients, which may contribute to a heightened risk of obesity. With obesity disproportionately affecting adolescents (ages 12–19 years), negative effects of excess adiposity may be particularly salient during this critical period of development. The presentation of chronic cardiometabolic disease symptoms typically observed in adults, such as hypertension, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia, and inflammation, are becoming increasingly common in adolescents with obesity. Additionally, there is dynamic interplay between obesity and psychosocial health, as adolescents with obesity may have increased levels of stress, depressive symptoms, and reduced resilience. To reduce and prevent adolescent obesity, the implementation of theory-driven multicomponent school- and community-based interventions have been suggested. These interventions promote knowledge and self-efficacy for healthful practices that have the potential to progress to sustained behavior change.
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