Children and Nutrition: Are Your Children Obese?

If you are a parent of an over weight/obese child, then it is your responsibility to do whatever you can to correct the situation. We hear it every day, our children and our country are getting bigger and bigger.  Actually, one in three children are considered overweight. I was listening on the radio talk show today about a staggering increase (47%??) in the next 15 years if we do not address this situation.  Not to mention the increase in healthcare needed to address diabetes, heart disease, cancer and general immobility. I find this very sad.  The quality of life for these individuals will be limited, as well as their life expectancy.  What to do?

Social influences from fast food, to vending machines, advertisements and the adult permission to eat junk and soda, combined with inactivity has provided an environment to encourage ill health and obesity. Unless parents take a proactive role in providing nutrient dense foods, opportunity to be active and play, decrease sedentary habits of video games and TV, our children will continue on a downward spiral into obesity and ill health.  Many obese children suffer emotionally and invariably carry this forward into their adulthood.  Along with this they are prone to diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Personally, I remember that I was a bit chunky as a young girl.  Some of my most dreadful memories were going to Sears to buy clothes in the ‘chubbette’ section.  How embarrassing was that? I still have a few emotional scars from the teasing.  I wasn’t even obese- a little chunky, but not obese.  It was the days when all there was was white flour, instant rice, frosted flakes and whole milk and concentrated juices. We had our share of real vegetables,fruits and meat, not all processed stuff.  My parents actually cooked! Going out to dinner was a rare event for all five kids. Our parents were not savvy  about nutrition, nor did you think you had to be,  you thought the supermarkets were filled with safe  and healthy food.  Inactivity was not an option. A family of five and a neighborhood that could make up two teams. You played outside until dark and came in for dinner, did your homework, read a book and went to bed. Not today- stop and notice how much sitting and inactivity your child has in a day.  If your child has had a stressful day- they need to move!  Exercise has proven to be one of the best stress busters available and improves learning

We have more education, more options to eat healthy, we have fresh fruits and vegetables year round, a treat should be a treat, not a daily event. Yet, we are bigger than ever. Children only eat what they are given or allowed to eat.

Take Action! If you need help in making nutritional changes in your family, reach out and as for it. Let me help you in changing your child’s health into a healthy one.  One that will provide improved self esteem, a healthy mind and a disease free body and important lifestyle habits. You can start by being the role model- kick the junk and fast food, start cooking.

Checkout this link to get more information:

http://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/children/index.html

Be well, Mary

 

 

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