It may be easier to think about weight loss as an adult. We have all of these options, diets, and supplements.But what happens when we ‘re looking at weight loss options for our kids> Should it be just catered to them?
Not surprisingly, America is one of the world’s most obese countries. According to a 2018 study, 36.2% of America’s population is obese, and 13 million of our children are obese. This translates to 1 out of every 4 children is obese. Obesity can lead to several health problems and has after-effects on the body later on in life. In adolescents, children feed off of physical exercise, running, and gym class, so it is important that at this age if it can be controlled, the better.
Establishing a healthy eating regimen early on can not only heal help your child’s physical health but also self-esteem and mental health.
Is my child overweight?
With children, it can be harder to tell if a child is overweight or not. BMI isn’t always an accurate indicator of this, so to start it is good to check with your doctor. Because children are constantly growing and maturing, it is harder to tell if they are growing into their bodies or if the extra weight is attributing attributed to their eating factors. It has been proven that obesity is caused by taking more food than expending energy. Those cheap, high-calorie foods have less nutritional value and are based on high carb, sugars starches that when broken down that are burned off easily. This makes us go back for more right after. When added to extra time on tablets, phones, and the internet and less time playing outside, it is no wonder why our children are becoming more overweight. Schools are also cutting back on physical education programs have attributed to this. Genetics are shown to play a small part in obesity in children. Obesity is caused by the way we eat and calorie consumption vs. output.
Make it a family endeavor
Children may eat their lunches (and sometimes breakfasts) at school, but their dinners and afternoon snacks are coming from home, where they are learning their eating habits. Establishing good rules at home is the key to creating healthy habits that stick. Starting early avoids the “ew mom! I don’t eat that!” later on. Coupled with healthy eating habits, getting at least 60 minutes of exercise per day can dramatically increase a child’s risk for obesity later on in life.
Why Banning certain foods doesn’t work
Banning certain foods makes cravings come back stronger and aids the opportunity to binge eat, Instead of banning foods entirely, implementing healthy choices as an option allows allowing healthy foods along with known foods gives children the option and introduces them to those new foods.
The reason why families are having such a hard time when it comes to weight loss attributes to our environments and foods available. We see other people eating fast food, junk food, and anything else we may want, but we don’t not the effects until we can no longer fit our clothes. A study from by JA Snethen suggests that there is no one direct way to prevent obesity over others. As a result, weight loss may become even more confusing because we have to use a culmination of methods to help our children lose weight.
The “Adding To” method
It is important to add options to the already established diet. Remember that small changes over time are easier than one big cold turkey approach. Not only will it be hard for you to adjust to (cooking, learning new recipes, learning a new way for you to eat yourself) it can also be overwhelming for your children. When adding new foods, fruits, vegetables, and proteins, thinking about the benefits it will give and not just how hard it may be at first.
While there is no “one size fits all” approach to weight loss, it is our responsibility to make sure we establish healthy eating habits. Weight gain can lead to detrimental health effects such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. What do you find so hard about maintaining healthy eating habits?
“Childhood Obesity and Weight Problems.” HelpGuide.org, 19 June 2019, www.helpguide.org/articles/diets/childhood-obesity-and-weight-problems.htm.
Dillinger, Jessica. “The Most Obese Countries In The World.” WorldAtlas, 2 Nov. 2015, www.worldatlas.com/articles/29-most-obese-countries-in-the-world.html.
Snethen, JA. “Effective Weight Loss for Overweight Children: a Meta-Analysis of Intervention Studies.” Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE): Quality-Assessed Reviews [Internet]., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 1 Jan. 1970, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK73275/.