Being overweight is problematic for adults, but it can be even more of an issue in children. If your child is obese, they will most likely be an obese adult. In addition, obese children are more likely to become severely obese as they become adults. Of course, obesity leads to a variety of other issues, such as heart problems, diabetes, fatigue, and even depression. These conditions not only affect your child's physical health, but they can also affect their emotional wellness. These tips will help reduce your child's risk of obesity.
Avoid Diets, Focus on Healthy Eating
Children who are on diets will grow up to be adults on diets and diets are only helpful for short-term weight loss. If your child is following some sort of fad diet, they have an even higher chance of failure, meaning they will most likely gain weight once off the diet.
Instead of teaching your child to "diet," teach your child to eat in a healthy manner starting at a very young age. Healthy, well-balanced diets can be good for your child even if this way of eating permits bread and pasta.
Prepare your child the fruits and vegetables that they actually like so they eat them each day. Instead of chocolate or flavored milk, offer your child low fat or non-fat milk and dairy options only. In most cases, they will not even taste a difference. Lean meats are healthy choices to ensure your child receives ample protein. Chicken, fish, beans, and lean ground beef are best.
Focus on the size of your child's portions, too. Make sure their plate contains more protein and vegetables than starches and sweets. If dining out, never upsize meals. Also, consider splitting up regular sized meals and bringing the leftovers home to eat another day.
Make Exercise Fun
The way your child eats matters, but the way they play is also important in preventing obesity.
Sitting in front of a computer or TV screen is not recommended, but it should not be prohibited. Make sure your child earns their screen time by playing outside beforehand.
Allow your child to run, play, and bike outdoors with friends and neighbors whenever possible, since just a few minutes of play time can offer enormous results for your child's physical and emotional health.
Sports are not for everyone, but allow your child to try a few different extracurricular activities to increase the amount of exercise they get each week. Soccer, baseball, basketball, and even swimming can be enjoyed on a team or with your family. Dance and martial arts are also great options for extracurricular activities that are healthy.
Your child can live a healthy lifestyle that is free of weight gain and the various health problems associated with it. With a healthy, well-balanced "diet" and plenty of fun exercise, you can prevent your child from becoming obese.
Of course, always meet with your child's pediatrician before starting a new diet or exercise routine.