How Obesity Affects Adults with Autism



Eating well and exercising regularly will be a challenge for anyone. Except for those with autism spectrum disorder or intellectual disabilities, that challenge is exponentially greater.

Many young men and ladies with autism and intellectual disabilities face a significantly higher risk for obesity, and every one the health complications that follow. Aside from diet and exercise, they might need other methods such as taking diet pills like Exipure to prevent obesity-caused medical conditions. Check out these Exipure consumer reviews for more information.

Yet, a small, new pilot study suggests that a diet and exercise program tailored to such individuals — and offered during a group environment with family support — can halt weight gain or maybe trigger notable weight loss.

Nabors cited medications and unique food preferences — often for high-calorie foods — as two main culprits which will drive weight gain in these groups.

Sensory problems — including hypersensitivity to tastes or smells — “can cause a restricted diet, which can not be healthy, lacking a spread of foods,” noted Coury, who is additionally a professor of pediatrics at Ohio State University.

“Part of getting autism has restricted interests or behaviors,” he added, alongside coordination and comprehension challenges. “They might not venture out for straightforward exercise like walking within the neighborhood, much less more strenuous exercise like running, as many people with autism or intellectual challenges favor to keep to themselves.”

That can leave caregivers in a very quandary, said Jean Gehricke, an associate director of research with the middle for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

Because of their food issues, they’ll resist a diet, putting these kids in danger for weight gain and obesity, he noted.

Offered programming designed for young adults with autism or intellectual disabilities were 17 UC students whom the study is focused on.


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Between January 2020 and April 2021, the scholars were offered weekly group classes — either in-person or online (due to COVID lockdowns) — that provided practical advice concerning good nutrition and regular exercise. Including faculty, undergraduate and grad students, and a disability researcher, the classes were led by a team of 10.

Ideal portion sizes, USDA nutrition recommendations, the importance of vitamins and minerals, and unhealthy foods to avoid are what the dietary information focused on. On reducing stress and improving sleep, there was also guidance.

In addition, eating and exercise goals were drafted for every student. For instance, they were encouraged to extend their fruit intake; to assist with meal preparation; to drink water rather than soda; and to spend longer walking, biking, dancing, or swimming.

Height and weight measurements were taken every two to a few months, and fogeys were interviewed regarding their child’s eating and exercise habits.

The result? While one student gained weight, two of the obese students lost a big amount of weight. Among the remainder, body mass index (a measurement supported height and weight) held steady.

Parental assessments were positive, and three-quarters of the scholars themselves said they were eating healthier.

The program, while preliminary, seemed “promising,” the investigators concluded.

The program’s success comes as little surprise to Kim Musheno, vice chairman of public policy with the Autism Society in Rockville, Md.

All kinds of individuals join up for all types of weight-loss training programs “because they’re searching for help,” she said. “They’re looking to be taught the way to recognize when they’re overeating and why. A way to exercise. They need to be taught about healthy foods and healthy lifestyles.