- Family and Parenting»
HOW TO PREVENT CHILD OBESITY THE PRACTICAL WAY
In the past, obesity in general was more prevailing in develop countries of the world, where high calorie and fatty foods are at its highest consumption. But this status has slightly changed, as both children; adults from developed and developing countries now suffer obesity.
According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 22 million children under the age of five globally, are overweight. This case has continued to rise at a greater increase. As I earlier stated, child obesity has now extended to developing countries in Africa. In the past, children from this continent are affected more by malnutrition than obesity, but this is now a reverse case.
And the most dangerous thing about obesity is that it exposes the victim to greater chances of developing early childhood diseases that can lead to death. Such diseases include heart attacks, high blood pressure, stroke and diabetes.
The question now is what is behind this worldwide rise of childhood obesity? Yes, genetics is one of the determining factors, but recent genetic researches proved that this is not actually the major or only cause. Though there are some genetic and hormonal causes of childhood obesity, but the most prevailing cause of childhood obesity is some kids habits of eating too much and doing little or no exercise.
The blame of this bad eating habit among children cannot just be put on the kids alone, but basically on their parents, who have lesser time to attend to their children’s welfare, in the name of work. This assumption is true because, working class parents nowadays, have less time and strength to prepare good meals for their families, therefore fast food becomes the only alternative. This situation has contributed to the rapid increase in fast food establishments worldwide.
Researches have proved that 90% of fast food meals are high in sugar and fats, a major cause of child obesity. Above all, in every five children that visits a fast food restaurant a day, two must consume a soft drink, which is also high in sugar and obesity quickening ingredients.
These children do not consume only fatty foods and cola drinks, but they also eat a lot of chocolates, burger, pork and sweets. All these are foods that are rich in cholesterol, fat and sugar, which increases a child’s chances of growing obese.
What then are the solutions? These solutions does not mean that you as a parent, should starve your children, as a way of preventing them from growing obese, this would be a very wrong understanding, as it may affect your child’s growth. Therefore, you must be careful when controlling your child’s weight.
One of the best strategies of fighting child and adult obesity is to improve the diet and exercise levels of your entire family. Achieving this could lie in the formulation and introduction of healthful habits into your family, so that with time, they will become a way of life for your children, which they might copy into their adulthood.
Healthy Practices To Help Your Obese Child
Some of these healthful habits include:
1. set the example in healthful eating and exercise
2. do not allow your children to skip morning foods or breakfasts, because this may lead to overeating later in the day.
3. Give your family (especially the children) more fruits than other regular foods
4. Reduce the consumption of soft cola drinks, high-fat snacks, sweetened beverages, sugary foods and snacks among your children. It is more preferable to give them more of water, healthful snacks (like crackers) and low-fat milks.
5. Avoid cooking methods that increase the fat-content of foods, instead use those methods that lowers fat, such as steaming, baking etc. avoid frying.
6. Stop your children from eating late night meals, as this is a great contributor to childhood obesity.
7. During meals, serve smaller portions, they can only complain at the start, with time, it becomes their way of life, do not be afraid to try.
8. Stop them from eating at leisure or at wills. For example, when watching a TV or when playing games, because this will not allow them to know exactly when they are saturated, so they consume much.
9. Limit their idle times like; watching television, using compute or playing video games.
10. Encourage them to be doing more physical activities like, bike riding, jumping rope, jogging, press ups, playing ball, hide and seek etc.
11. Always take your children on a family vacation or walks; visit game reserves or zoo.