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Seven Simple Steps to Fight Childhood Obesity.

Updated on March 23, 2018
GALAXY 59 profile image

Galaxy has worked in commercial catering for over thirty years and is a committed vegetarian. She is also a qualified nutritionist.

Make Food From Scratch Using Fresh Ingredients.

Fresh vegetables are a must for a healthy diet.
Fresh vegetables are a must for a healthy diet. | Source

Fat Children Often Become Fat Adults.

I know that we are not really supposed to use the word fat anymore when referring to children or adults but sometimes the harshest word is the one that is going to have the most impact.

You can replace the word fat with obese, overweight, chubby, cuddly or anything you want but facts are facts if you are too heavy for your height then all that extra weight is largely made up of fat. There is no doubt that many countries are facing a huge rise in cases of childhood obesity and fat kids do tend to turn into fat adults. But there are ways to fight it and break the trend. You can stop your kids getting fat.

And fat is bad. Very bad. Fat kids can become fat adults. Now, this isn’t going to be a set of instructions on how to cross the road when you see a fat kid coming at you, or what to say to someone who is blessed with a little too much blubber to cause the most upset, or even how to cope when you are sat next to the fat kid in class by a well-meaning teacher who thinks the two of you could be best friends forever if you tried a little harder.

This is simply a little bit of information on how to avoid having a fat kid for a son/daughter or how to avoid becoming a fat kid.

Seven Simple Changes.

Make a few simple changes to your eating habits and you will soon see great rewards.

1) Drink a glass of water before you start eating. It helps to fill you up.

2) Cut out fried foods, try oven baking instead and you will save yourself a lot of empty calories. Most foods taste better baked than fried.

3) Switch to low-fat milk and cheese, if you can, or just cut down on the amount of full-fat variety you consume.

4) Eat more fresh fruit - all that extra fibre will fill you up and make you feel less hungry.

5) Stop eating when you feel full. Parents please take note and do not press your child to finish their meal and clear their plates, just give smaller portions and offer second helpings if anyone is still genuinely hungry.

6) Try not to eat between meals, if you must snack then keep a supply of healthy snack foods handy. It doesn’t have to be raw carrot sticks- although, in my opinion, they do taste good.

7) Cut down on processed foods as they often contain high levels of salt, sugar and fat. Making food from scratch can be a bit of a chore, but it is worth it.


Fresh Healthy Fruit and Vegetables

Carrot salad with black grapes and sunflower seeds.
Carrot salad with black grapes and sunflower seeds. | Source

A Great Tasting Salad

5 stars from 1 rating of Carrot, black grape and sunflower seed salad.

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Ready in: 10 min
Yields: serves four as a starter or two as a main course.

Ingredients

  • bag spinach leaves
  • 3 sticks celery, sliced
  • large bunch basil
  • 2 large carrots, grated
  • bunch black grapes, cut in half
  • handful walnuts, roughly chopped
  • handful sunflower seeds
  • 3 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1tsp mild mustard
  • 1 egg yolk
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • optional small amount cheese, for added protein
  • optional 2 hard boiled eggs, for added protein

Instructions

  1. Place a generous amount of washed uncooked spinach leaves on your serving plates, You can replace spinach with rocket if prefered.
  2. Tear the basil leaves into smaller pieces to release their oils.
  3. mix together the basil, grated carrot, sunflower seeds, celery, grapes and walnut pieces.
  4. In a clean screw-top jar mix together the egg yolk, oil, vinegar and mustard.
  5. Seal the jar and give it a really good shake until you end up with a smooth dressing.
  6. Taste the dressing and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Pour the dressing over the salad just before you take it to the table. If you add it too soon the salad will be quite soggy, not crisp.
  8. If you are using cheese then add it now, grated over the top. This will provide some extra protein. If you want to add hard boiled eggs then cut them into quarters and lay them over the top of the salad.

Puppy fat is Still fat!

I speak from a position of some authority here as I was, not all that long ago, (okay it was many years ago but sometimes it seems like only yesterday) the fattest kid in my class at school. Think of just about any derogatory term for a chubby kid and I will have been called it at least once. I have been laughed at, spat at, shouted at and worst of all by far - completely ignored.

I know what it feels like to be the only child in a class to not receive an invitation to a birthday party and I swear hand on well-padded heart that if I had been invited to the party I would not have eaten all of the cake, just most of it. I have known the shame of trying to fit in when playing sports, or indeed the shame of trying to fit into sports kit.

To any mother out there who says ‘don’t worry it’s just puppy fat, you’ll grow out of it’ can I just say – rubbish! Stop filling up your kids’ plate with the wrong type of food and way too much of it too and try making a nice salad instead.

Don't give your children lunch money, just give them a healthy packed lunch. Faced with a choice between chocolate, crisps and chips or something healthy a child will almost always choose the former. Be cruel to be kind.

Do More - eat less. Keep on the Move.

Do more - eat less is a damn good philosophy to live by for anyone but especially those of us carrying the equivalent of a toddler around with us every day. So kids- put down the play station controller and take control of your life instead, get outside and do some walking – don’t run just yet, trust me, nobody needs to see a fat kid trying to run, it is only going to make you the object of even more ridicule.

Walk and you could be walking to the nearest Pizza restaurant, burger bar or on your way to grab a family sized bag of fat-filled snacks. All things that the rest of the world will expect you to be doing and so nothing to arouse suspicion or invite too many cruel remarks or laughter.

If you really don’t want to take your exercise outside then walk up and down the stairs or around the house, avoid the kitchen! You don’t want to fall prey to the siren call of the last slice of apple pie you know is sitting on the bottom shelf of the fridge just begging to be eaten.

Any movement, no matter how small, will help you lose weight by increasing your metabolism so keep moving. Even something as silly as tapping your feet can help, so if your child is always fidgeting then don't stop them - they are burning fat.

Please Don't Take Offence.

I really don't want to upset anyone with this little article and I hope that no one has taken offence. I just know how terrible it feels to be fat. Being an overweight adult is bad enough but to be an overweight child can be devastating. If a person learns proper eating habits as a child they will benefit from them for a lifetime, and that life will be a whole lot longer if they stay within a healthy weight range. I also think that a sense of humour is a valuable weapon in the fight against fat!

REMEMBER - It isn't easy to lose weight but it is possible.


Please take this short poll.

Do you think it is okay to use the term 'fat' when refering to an overweight person?

See results

© 2013 Galaxy Harvey

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    6 months ago from United Kingdom

    Thanks, Nell Rose, I love spinach too, such a versatile vegetable and so good for you too.

  • Nell Rose profile image

    Nell Rose 

    6 months ago from England

    I love spinach. In fact I am doing what you suggest above. every time I eat salad or veg I get out the spinach leaves!

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    5 years ago from United Kingdom

    Curiousworld, glad that you recognised the 'tongue in cheek' nature of this hub. It is a serious subject but that doesn't mean we need to lose our sense of humour!

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    5 years ago from United Kingdom

    Thanks LupitaRonquillo, I agree a little mutual respect is always a good thing in any relationship. And teach by example is another very good thing, if a parent eats the right things then odds are the children will too.

  • curiousworld profile image

    Ashley 

    5 years ago from Colorado

    This is a funny hub, finally someone has the nerve to actually use the word fat. I mean it's not a bad thing to be fat but people need willpower and self control.

    Sometimes the best motivation is to be more strict like this article was. It reaches a deeper place in the heart.

  • LupitaRonquillo profile image

    LupitaRonquillo 

    5 years ago

    All great tips to help prevent our kids from becoming overweight, thank you! If I may add, also spending QUALITY TIME with your kids gives them the opportunity to like who are, notice your interests, and look up to you as an adult. Kids naturally want their parents to be proud of them so if they RESPECT and LIKE you as a person and not just a parent (which nowadays, most parents complain they don't even get that), they will learn to LIKE what you value too! If you don't care about what you eat, then how will you expect them too??

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    5 years ago from United Kingdom

    Thank you abhishek25, our kids have far too many 'sit down' things to do in the home these days if you ask me. Mind you, when I was young we only had three tv channels and no laptops and I still managed to pile on the pounds!

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