How Coordination Disorder Affects Your Weight

Coordination disorder, also known as dyspraxia, is a disorder that hasn’t received much attention until recently. Everyone, including doctors, assumed that coordination disorder was a minor problem that didn’t have large effects on the children who suffered from it. However, recent research shows that if you have coordination disorder, you are more likely to be overweight or obese.

Information on Coordination Disorder

To understand how coordination disorder can influence your weight gain or loss, it’s important to know a little bit of the background of this condition. Coordination disorder affects approximately 5% of the population. If you have a coordination disorder, you’ll notice that it negatively impacts your general physical ability and motor skills. This includes both fine and gross motor skills. Fine motor skills include everyday tasks like writing, typing and brushing your teeth. Gross motor skills include activities like running, jumping and other major physical movements. Behaviorally, symptoms of coordination disorder can align with symptoms of ADHD and disorders on the autism spectrum. It may result in mental, physical, psychological or behavioral issues that continue into adulthood for some.

Weight and Coordination Disorder

On top of these negative effects, there is the increased risk for obesity or being overweight. A Canadian study showed that if you suffer from coordination disorder, you are three times more likely to be overweight than someone without coordination disorder. It’s difficult to tell what causes this heightened risk. Perhaps there is a physical problem that causes both the coordination disorder and a predisposition to excess weight gain. However, it could also be that the decrease in motor skills caused by coordination disorder is to blame for the weight gain. After all, if you have difficulty running or exercising, it’s entirely probable that you would choose not to exercise. Even if you do exercise, if you’re doing it inefficiently you will probably not burn as many calories as someone who has full use of their motor skills. Until further research is conducted, it is difficult to figure out which of these two causes is the true link between obesity and coordination disorder.

What You Can Do about It

Researchers are already hard at work to figure out how to help people with coordination disorder maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle. The problem has come to the forefront of medical science. In the meantime, you can help yourself reach a healthy weight and offset the negative effects of coordination disorder. Studies have shown that using fish oil and primrose oil supplements help offset negative learning and behavioral issues in those who have coordination disorder. Although research hasn’t been done on how this affects weight, it may be that controlling some negative effects of the disorder helps other negative effects. Do your best to consistently exercise. It may be more of a challenge than it is for other people, but it is also the best way to keep yourself as healthy and fit as you can be.

As coordination disorder studies are performed, you’ll learn more and more about how it affects your weight. Until scientists have more definite information, all you can do is take the information available and try to live a healthy, balanced lifestyle to control your weight.

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  • Alan Waterman

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