Preventing childhood obesity can and must be accomplished. Meaningful advice and solutions for obesity are available. There is enough blame to go around. The government, industry, media, communities, schools, and family.
“8 IMPORTANT QUESTIONS”
1)Can parental guidance (or lack of it) kids receive eliminate their obesity?
2)Has today’s parents grown up in fast-food town?
3)Are they passing their bad habits along to their children?
4)Has food and unhealthy snacks become an expression of love?
5)Do parents’ accept responsibility for children’s activity levels?
6)Are you killing your kids with kindness? Just say No to bad food choices.
7)Do you want your child to die younger than you?
8)What type of eating behavior do you model for your child?
When it comes to child obesity, a band-aid will not fix the problem any longer.
Jack Winkler, professor of nutrition policy at London Metropolitan University said: “Almost a quarter of kids are already overweight by the time they arrive at primary school, which is the parents’ responsibility. So we need to do something about parents, too.”
WHO IS THE BLAME?
“6 RESPONSIBLE ENTITIES”
The Institute of Medicine(IOM) spreads the blame to six entities:
Government – After the CDC reported this week that the health cost of obesity is up to $147 billion annually, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told the CDC conference Tuesday that reducing obesity is at the heart of health care.
Industry – The food and beverage industry also has an important role in building awareness about the urgency of childhood obesity and providing children and families with necessary information to make healthy choices.
Media – The time a child spends using media displaces the time they could spend in physical actity. Food ads expose a child and influences them to make unhealthy food choices.
Communities – Children and youth in urban environments may be active in a wider variety of open spaces (e.g., yards, parks, vacant lots) and less likely to constrain activity to streets and sidewalks. Greenness might indicate proximity to parks, playfields or other open spaces that promote either physical activity or increased time spent outdoors in active play.
Schools – Schools can contribute to the prevention of childhood obesity by improving nutritional patterns at the school site, improving physical education and activity in the school, developing appropriate before and afterschool programs, and creating effective school wellness policies and coordinated school health programs.
Home Environment – “Good eating habits start at home. If parents are eating poorly, chances are their kids are too” said research scientist Susan H. Babey. The keys to solving the child obesity crisis start with parents. Parents are the primary role models for their children and their (the parents’) behavior can positively or negatively influence their child to have a solution for their obesity.
“YOU CAN DO IT!”
5-2-1 Almost None helps parents and kids remember the basics of a healthy lifestyle.
– Eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables daily.
– Limiting screen time to 2 hours (or less) a day.
– Getting 1 or more hours of physical activity every day.
– Drinking almost no sugary beverages.
The guidelines in the 5-2-1-Almost None formula have been shown to help people prevent obesity, and maintain a healthy weight.
Parents please model overweight prevention for your child. Make healthy eating and exercise a family affair.