PREVENTING CHILDHOOD OBESITY

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.

ALMOST NONE

“YOU CAN DO IT!”

5-2-1 Almost None helps parents and kids remember the basics of a healthy lifestyle.

What’s involved?

– 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.

Kids Must Eat Healthy Foods To Develop A Healthy Lifestyle

Kids Must Eat healthy foods to develop A healthy lifestyle. In order to achieve this, kids must be taught what to eat starting at an early age, so that they would recognize healthy foods. They must eat healthy meals to develop a healthy lifestyle as they grow older.

Some parents wonder why their children are obese and cannot understand where they went wrong in causing the problem even when they take genetics in consideration. The great part of the answer lies in the statement made on January 31, 2011, by the Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack when he stated “The 2010 Guidelines are being released at a time when the majority of Americans are overweight and one in three children is overweight or obese and this is a crisis we can no longer ignore”. This is so because parents do not take control of what they give their kids to eat and what their kids eat period. Eating healthy is a necessary for kids to be healthy.

The Guidelines he referred to was the latest issue of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans prepared by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). These documents are evidence-based guidance to promote good health through improved nutrition and physical exercise.

It is no surprise to me that so many kids are obese, because the majority of their parents may well be overweight or obese themselves, as the statistics for overweight Americans may suggest. They do not have a healthy eating plan, to ensure that they prepare healthy meals for the family, while ignoring the proven fact that kids must eat healthy foods to develop a healthy lifestyle free of diseases. This pertains to the parents more so, because as we get older, with the same unhealthy eating resulting in unhealthy living, year in year out, our body will succumb to diseases which are always willing and ready to intrude into our lives if in an unhealthy state.

What the parents eat may reflect the size and the physical condition of the children. So if the parents persistently eat meals of unhealthy foods, then that is the food that the children will know will be accustomed to and eat, which of course will affect the kids health.. And yet some parents wonder why their children are overweight. If they look in the mirror, invariably the answer will be staring back at them. The image of a fat belly, overweight and perhaps obese unhealthy adult. A very poor example to the kids of living a healthy lifestyle.

It is the parents’ responsibility to introduce their children to low calorie foods, with their plates half full with vegetables and fruits and getting plenty of physical activity to give them the best possible start in life. This is where a healthy lifestyle begins. Ignorance is not an excuse or acceptable. Kids must eat healthy foods to develop a healthy lifestyle.

I am postulating that an important step in preventing childhood obesity is educating the adults in good how to prepare healthy recipes, teaching them what is a healthy diet, why fruits and vegetables, whole grain foods, dietary fiber, fish must be consumed in adequate quantities, while food containing saturated fat, too much sugar and salt must be consumed in very controlled quantities and foods containing transfat altogether avoided.

Educate the parents and save the children. But you know what, there is so much information out there in the media, particularly in this cyberspace age, that it is not the access of information that is causing the preference for the junk food and basically unhealthy foods, it is the easy access to, the taste of, and the preponderance of advertisement of the unhealthy foods that are overshadowing all efforts being made to educate.

If something drastic is not done to counteract this epidemic of obesity among the young, not to mention the adult population, that is permeating our society, Type2 diabetes will be the order of the day and the cost to treat it and its accompanying serious diseases will be astronomical and a burden that no entity can afford. To stem the tide of this impending disaster kids must eat healthy foods to develop a healthy lifestyle.

What an impending problem? Check it out if you will.

This problem is endemic in the developed societies, where processed foods are plentiful and cheap. Single moms after a hard day’s work return home worn out and tired and experience hungry children’s eyes staring at them in anticipation of a quick dinner. So they prepare the easily available processed foods to avoid to feed the hungry little bellies anxiously awaiting .

Though this may be somewhat understandable, but a parent has to consider the effect unhealthy foods will have on their children’s health in the long term. If they start out eating healthy foods that you know are nutritious, they are going to get accustomed to those foods as they grow into adulthood and hopefully do the same for their children and help stem the tide of the impending health crisis.

To counteract this dilemma, is to find healthy recipes using affordable healthy foods, that do not come out of a box and prepare these for the kids. It is doable, even if all the constraints are considered. It calls for a little imagination and effort and mothers are naturally endowed with these gifts, these qualities. Doing this as the general practice will no doubt influence the kids to eat healthy foods, develop a healthy lifestyle and live it.

We all have to eat to live, the more healthy foods we eat the longer we live. Your children eat at home, at friends and family and at school. What you train them to eat at home will most likely influence what they indulge to eat abroad, which can play a significant part in their overall health. This is why kids must eat healthy foods to develop a healthy lifestyle.

The Role of Parents in Preventing Childhood Obesity

Obesity among children has emerged as an alarming epidemic in the past few decades. Children who are obese have far greater risks for obesity in adulthood and hence fall prey to a number of health risks and issues. Studies have shown that social, economic and environmental factors playa significant role in the weight status of a child. One of these factors is parenting styles which have a direct influence on children and their development.

Childhood obesity statistics reveal that the same is more common in economically disadvantaged countries. In addition obesity among children has increased fourfold in the past three decades. Children perform a majority of their physical activities under the supervision of their parents. The same holds true for nutrition, which is usually overseen by parents. This suggests that the role of parents may be viewed as an immense opportunity for controlling childhood obesity and for developing strategies which prevent obesity.

Studies reveal that parents can make use of a number of techniques in order to convince their children for adopting a healthy lifestyle. Firstly, for children who refuse a certain nutritious food, we recommend giving it more than one try. Young children are prone to resist new experiences. Another strategy for children might be to encourage their socialization with other children and peers who eat such nutritious food. Children are more receptive to cues they pick from socialization. The importance of role models cannot be neglected in this aspect. Parents need to establish themselves as a guidance source such that they intake healthy and nutritious food at home. At a community level different informative initiatives maybe taken, such that the exposure of care-takers and parents towards healthy food recipes and cooking techniques is increased. Food selection and healthy food preparation is an important part of child nutrition. These tips need to be incorporated into child development. Understanding the social behavior of children too will play a positive role in changing their eating habits and developing utile intervention at home.

Parents can play an important role in childhood obesity prevention by perceiving it as a personal responsibility. Through good parental communication they can work on improving the overall attitude and behavior of their children towards food and nutrition. In addition, they can also participate at a community level by encouraging community sports event and programs in order to encourage physical activity among their children. This initiative maybe taken a step ahead to include and to engage other parents in order to leverage the positive impact of external influences. Balanced diet plays a key role in child care and development. Obesity prevention can be effectively handled if parents or family circles facilitate healthy nutrition options throughout the day for their children.