Common Reasons For Weight Gain In Teenagers

Common Reasons For Weight Gain In Teenagers

Common Reasons For Weight Gain In Teenagers - ShapeDown
Common Reasons For Weight Gain In Teenagers – ShapeDown

Teens may gain weight for various reasons, including a change in their hormone levels and a tendency toward harmful behaviors. Poor nutrition and a bad diet, including an absence of physical activity, are the leading causes of excess weight gain in teenagers. On the other hand, hormonal shifts associated with puberty might contribute to rapid weight gain in adolescents.

Teenagers should avoid gaining too much weight but shouldn’t deny themselves the average, healthy weight gain. Read on as we delve into unexplained weight gain in teens, the causes of obesity in this age group, and how to achieve and keep a healthy weight.

What Are The Symptoms Of Obesity In A Teen?

Excessive fat storage is the primary indicator of obesity. However, accurate measurements of body fat are notoriously tricky to obtain. A body mass index (BMI) measure is used to get a better estimate.

The BMI calculates an individual’s body mass index based on weight and height. Ultimately, the outcome is compared to norms for kids of the same gender.

Teens are considered overweight if their BMI is over the 85th or 95th percentile for their age and gender. Obesity is a BMI larger than the 95th percentile for one’s age and gender.


Behaior - ShapeDown
Behaior – ShapeDown

Childhood obesity may be exacerbated by shared family behaviors, such as unhealthy eating and lack of physical activity. How much weight gain or loss your kid experiences depends partly on their caloric intake and energy expenditure.

Families with hectic schedules tend to reach for high-calorie, high-fat, and high-sugar options. These drinks and foods lack vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. The number of kids who play outside has decreased, while the number who sit about doing nothing has increased.

The rising popularity of electronic devices like video games, tablets, and cellphones may lead to more time spent sitting than is already finished. This contributes to why more and more teens gain extra weight and have too much body fat.

Genetic factors

In many cases, the prevalence of obesity can be traced back to genetic factors. A family history of obesity increases the risk of obesity in a child. Genetics by itself does not produce fat. When kids consume more calories than they burn and don’t take a healthy diet, they become overweight. A teen’s weight dramatically depends on genetic factors and poor eating habits.

Dietary habits

Dietary habits - ShapeDown
Dietary habits – ShapeDown

Adolescents’ and teenagers’ dietary patterns have evolved from nutritious foods (including fruits, veggies, and whole grains) to a much larger focus on fast food, artificial healthy snacks, and sugary beverages. These foods are typically heavy in fat and caloric while somewhat nutrient-poor.

Most of the time, however, weight gain before and during puberty is associated with a teen’s developmental stage, culture, healthy food environment, and balanced diet and eating habits.

Obesity is linked to several behavioral characteristics. Eating when you’re not hungry, snacking while watching TV or completing homework, and having sodas despite doing nothing active are all examples of unhealthy behaviors. These disturb the cycle of average weight gain.


The increasing independence connected with childhood can result in more eating. Adolescents who just got their license can find themselves in the fast food drive-through without realizing it.

Perhaps they’ll have a get-together in the neighborhood cafe. The alternative is to eat out more frequently at healthy food places for lunch or dinner.

Reduced Physical Activity

Reduced Physical Activity - ShapeDown
Reduced Physical Activity – ShapeDown

Teens who don’t participate in organized sports might not get enough exercise. Physical education programs in schools have been on the decline for decades.

Class scheduling and an absence of gym time cut into students’ opportunities for outdoor play. This has the potential to lower metabolic rate and caloric expenditure daily. In this way, it is tough for a kid to lose weight.

Eating Unhealthy Foods

Eating Unhealthy Foods - ShapeDown
Eating Unhealthy Foods – ShapeDown

In contrast to younger children, who are typically served whatever is available, teenagers usually begin to have some say over what they eat. This implies that many teenagers may start to veer off the rails in terms of making nutritious eating choices but instead select more indulgent fare like chocolates, fries, and processed food.

Even with a higher teenage metabolism, weight gain is possible due to the prevalence of harmful foods in the modern world and teens’ general lack of concern about what they put into their bodies.

A packet of chips or sugar drinks from Starbucks can effortlessly add up to a day’s eating without filling and are examples of this type of nutrition.

Growth Spurts and Puberty

Growth Spurts and Puberty - ShapeDown
Growth Spurts and Puberty – ShapeDown

The adolescent years are a time of increased calorie intake due to adolescence and growth cycles. You’ll most likely be much hungrier than usual throughout these years, and when you add in the following factor (a diet high in junk foods), the result is a prescription for weight gain.

In the year following the onset of puberty, it is not ordinary for children to gain 5-10 pounds, but this can be greater for teen girls and is only a rough recommendation. That’s about how much weight gain is often associated with adolescence. Still, other factors, such as hormonal shifts and a rise in appetite, can contribute to even more weight gain.

Cultural Factors

Marketing campaigns for fast food restaurants and junk food can encourage kids to overeat these products, leading to obesity. Kids are exposed to adverts on TV and billboards in their communities. This meal is typically high in calories and serves a lot.

A mix of these factors can bring on child obesity. Hormone abnormalities are another health risk for childhood obesity. While diseases can play a role in contributing to childhood obesity, this is an exception rather than the rule.

It is possible to rule out a medical problem with a physical examination and some blood tests. Taking some drugs may raise the possibility of gaining weight.

Bottom Line

Several parents begin to become concerned when they observe their teens acquiring weight. A lot happens in the body during adolescence, from sudden and surprising weight growth to a more steady and steady filling out.

Numerous things can cause significant weight gain: a disruption in reproductive hormones of the pituitary, for example, can contribute to fast weight gain. Furthermore, in many cases, quick weight gain indicates that excess calories, consumption, and exercise are getting off track.

There’s a tight line to walk as a parent when your very self-sufficient adolescent starts showing signs of acquiring quite so much weight.

Jim Yi