4 Steps to Preventing Childhood Obesity

In the past few years, information on childhood obesity seems to be everywhere. The reason for this is because of the frightening rate at which the number of obese children is growing. Society is consequently trying hard to react to a worsening problem that is spreading to almost epidemic proportions.

There are four main steps all parents must take in order to prevent childhood obesity in their children.

Abolish soft drinks from the diet

One of the biggest problems in children’s diets today is that of carbonated soft drinks. Because of the fact that there is absolutely no nutritional value in these drinks, it is crucial that they are eliminated from the diet. This is particularly recommended by physicians and nutritionists as an important factor in combating the epidemic of childhood obesity that has become a reality of the modern era.

Elimination of these drinks from your child’s diet may be a difficult process, depending upon age and the amount of consumption. If the child is at an age where he or she does not yet make a choice in what is consumed, then the process is easy. This is where you simply stop giving these drinks to the child, replacing them with more healthy alternatives. Where children are old enough to help themselves, it is important to ensure that no soft drinks are available. Stock your refrigerator with low-fat milk, water, or fruit juices made from real fruit.

Remember that you are a role model for your child and therefore, it is important that you lead by example in your choice of nutritious drinks both at home and when dining out.

By creating a soft drink free environment at home and teaching your child about healthier alternatives, you can help to change the thought processes. This is only one step but that step can go a long way toward helping your child to achieve or to maintain a healthy weight.

Restrict fast food

For children who are already showing signs of obesity, it is best to completely eliminate things such as hamburgers, fried chicken, chips, milkshakes and other fattening products from fast food restaurants. However, if this has been part of the child’s routine, it may be difficult. Although scientific literature gives no specific recommendations, it is believed among nutritional experts that fast food is acceptable on a once per week basis.

It is not necessary to totally eliminate takeaway food from the diet but rather to help the child to make healthier choices. Many fast food restaurants are now listening to public opinion and providing a healthier range of food rather than just the traditional range that they are renowned for.

To totally eliminate fast food would be unrealistic as there is also a social connection, particularly in the older children. Often this is a meeting place for friends and it would be hard for the child to resist temptation. It is crucial therefore, that parents ensure their child understands how the traditional fast foods contribute to obesity.

Limit television viewing
It would be unrealistic to think of eliminating television from your child’s life not to mention deprivation. There are many programs on television these days that are beneficial to your child’s development. However, it is important to limit television viewing as well as other technology such as DVDs and internet.

Child rearing professionals advocate no television at all for children under two and no more that two hours per day for children over two. This also applies to other media technology though internet surfing for homework purposes could be exempt. Remember also that if your child is spending a lot of time on the internet, it is important to have internet security software for their protection.

Another way of restricting television viewing is to only have a television in the family room rather than allowing your child to have one in the bedroom.

Dinner time is for enjoying the meal and also for enjoying the company and closeness of family. Turn the television off to promote conversation.

Promote physical activity
One of the great regrets of our modern age is the lack of activity of our children. Imaginative play has been replaced by media technology which induces sedentary lifestyles. Our children should all be physically active every day. This can take the form of play, sport, physical education, walking to school or shops, community activities, or any other activity that requires a level of physical exertion.

Pre-school children should be engaging in a minimum of three sessions each week of physical activities that last more than twenty minutes at a time and that require moderate to vigorous levels of exertion. This should increase as the child gets older. As the child reaches school age, this activity should be reaching around 30 minutes to an hour of physical activity on all or most days of the week.

These recommendations will be difficult at first for the child who has been inactive so don’t expect results too quickly. Aim for fun activities with siblings or parents at first. Things such as playing a game of tag or going for a family walk in the park are better than doing nothing and will be beneficial to everyone. Gradually increase the activity during these outings. If done in a fun atmosphere, the child will look forward to these activities and it will become a natural way of life.

Looking to the Future
Unfortunately, obese children often grow up to be obese adults. They are then likely to suffer diseases attributable to this obesity and the economic costs to the community are substantial.

It is therefore in everybody’s interests for measures such as the abolition of soft drinks and fatty fried foods, sweets and chips and any other obesity producing foods to be banned from school tuck shops and in other areas where children frequently purchase foods. Advocating for our children’s health and for the future of this generation is of the utmost importance.

Simple and Easy Ways to Prevent Childhood Obesity

Current research shows that approximately 300 million people are obese and 5% of these people are children. Similar to adults, obesity causes several health risks and can decrease your child’s life expectancy. Obese children have a higher probability of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes and severe emotional distress and trauma. Childhood obesity prevention is very important and can ultimately save your child’s life.

There are several factors that could cause your child to become obese. Many people assume that both adults and children that are overweight or obese are lazy and eat too much. Although these factors can lead to obesity, they are not the only culprits. Obesity can be caused by genetics, illness and even emotional trauma. Some children begin to suffer weight issues after their parents get a divorce or they suffer the loss of a loved one. You should monitor your child’s behavior after any traumatic event to ensure your child is dealing with their emotions properly.

Preventing childhood obesity does not have to be difficult. Here is a list of 4 simple and easy ways to prevent your child from becoming obese.

1. Breastfeeding
Breastfeeding is the best way to prevent not only childhood obesity but also other disorders like asthma. A mother’s milk is full of nutrients and is high in protein which can help establish a well-balanced metabolic rate for your child. If your child has a high metabolic rate, they are less likely to suffer from weight issues. However, if you did not breastfeed your child, you should not blame yourself for your child’s weight issues. Breastfeeding is only one piece to this very large puzzle.

2. Caloric intake
Generally, weight issues stem from eating more calories than your body expends. You should avoid giving your child high-calorie junk foods that contain excessive amounts of fats and sugar. You should substitute these with healthy, fiber-rich fruits and vegetables. If your child is slightly overweight, you should also monitor and track all the food that your child eats. This can help you and your doctor determine the proper course of action to prevent any weight issues from getting worse.

3. Exercise
You should get your child in the habit of doing consistent exercise. Obviously, you should speak with your doctor before starting your child on any exercise regimen because their muscles and bones are still developing. You do not want to hinder your child’s overall growth. Keep exercise fun; therefore, make sure it is age appropriate. A child may not want to do an hour on the Stair Master and they really should not. It may be too much for their heart and lungs to handle. If you find age appropriate exercises, your child is more likely to stay consistent and enjoy being an active individual.

4. Limit access to the television and computer
You should limit the amount of time your child spends in front of the television or computer. Research has proven that children that spend more time watching television or surfing the internet are more likely to become overweight and obese.

Preventing your child from becoming obese is extremely important and very simple. Children are very resilient and will to respond to changes fairly quickly.

Tips for Parent to Prevent Childhood Obesity

Childhood Obesity is the most common disorder found among majority of natives. Obesity is not just one problem; rather it is a gateway to a number of physical and mental problems. Thus, it is a critical issue of concern among all parents today.

Childhood obesity is a serious concern in today’s society. It also comes in with several psychological issues among kids, such as low self esteem, inferiority complex, fear to face public, etc.

Common Causes of childhood obesity are poor diet structure, lack of physical exercise, unfit lifestyle, and genetic disorder.

The above childhood obesity facts need urgent attention in order to save their life and protect them being a victim of critical disorders. Complete parents support is required as they are the prime source of guidance and motivation for kids. Here are the most effective ways to save your kid from the harsh condition of obesity:

1. Set fix time limit to play video games and computer games. Same should be applied for watching television too. Sitting for hours in front of computer or television makes your child dull, inactive and lethargic, which promotes obesity.

2. Keep your kid away from fast food and junk food. These are bad food choices and add some extra calories to your child’s weight, nothing else. Create a habit of eating health and nutritious food in your kid. For this, love such foods yourself. Moreover, try to have a family meal instead of eating individually. When your child will observe you eating and enjoying healthy food, he’ll definitely do the same.

3. Let your children come out of the obesity disorder by creating a habit of regular outdoor playing and physical exercise. This is yet another highly effective way to stay fit by burning extra calories and facts of the body. Here again, the parent must be a part of outdoor activities with his/her kids. Moreover, do not compel your kid to play a particular game or exercise. Let him play any outdoor game he wishes to, provided it is safe.

4. Never threaten your kid to stop eating unhealthy stuffs. Such threats will enhance the problem rather than diminishing it. Moreover, this will make your kid be stubborn and non reactive to instructions.

5. Prepare variety of yummy and health dishes instead of following the same boring menu every alternate day. Variety is the spice of life and is loved by kids. It is not that a healthy food cannot be delicious.

Being a parent, make sure that you are a part of each and every tip discussed above so as to prevent obesity in your kid. Remember, your child is your shadow and will follow what you do.