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Childhood obesity and how you could escape this epidemic
Childhood obesity is on the rise and this trend isn’t changing soon. I’m sure you’ve observed the same too. so what can we do about this epidemic?
As a parent, there’s nothing cuter than chubby, dimply cheeks on your toddler. But, is this the healthiest state they could be in? The million-dollar question is: How can you prevent childhood obesity without compromising on the quality of life your children are leading? In this post, we see that even obese children have a hard time shopping for fitting clothes. Luckily, a child doesn’t get obese overnight and there are several things you could do to reverse this process. As a parent, you’re tasked with ensuring the healthy upbringing (mentally, physically and socially) and if you won’t, no one will.
Make healthy diets are a family affair
Build an “it’s in the family mentality.” In most families – parents especially the mother – decide what food will be eaten. Before you control the foods that they eat; teach them the benefits of making healthy dietary decisions. The only way they’ll learn to choose healthy foods is when you lead by example. I’m sure you’re starting to see how you too will gain from the program. Children learn with their eyes; they’ll do what they see you doing. Changing your lifestyle will be no easy fete. Start by making small changes. Give your kids a “soft landing” and the transition to a healthy lifestyle will be an easy one. The human mind is naturally slow at adapting. Don’t make wholesale changes as you’ll be risking burn out.
Start by ditching unhealthy snacks and substituting them with healthy ones
Yes, I’m speaking of those fatty, sugar-laced snacks in your refrigerators and cupboards. Switch them for fresh eggs, tasty nuts, and unflavoured yogurt. (Bonus tip: Did you know that plain yogurt is rich in probiotics that promote the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut?) Stop buying sugary breakfast cereals – kids hate them either way. Shop for the ones with bran instead. For sure oatmeal and fresh carrot juice isn’t the tastiest breakfast combination ever but it will boost your kids’ immunity in the long run. Whenever you want to reduce their daily caloric intake, switch from whole milk to skim. Leafy vegetables (especially chad) are rich in dietary fiber. In addition to fighting tummy upsets; fiber makes us feel fuller for longer. The end result is reduced appetite and cravings. You’ll be the one killing two birds with one stone.
Reduce screen hours
Our sedentary lives involve sitting on the couch all day watching Netflix and then walking a few meters to the refrigerator to grab unhealthy snacks. Even with the best personal trainer, no exercise could cancel out a bad diet. If possible, limit the time they spend in front of screens (laptops and tablets included) to a maximum of two hours every day for each family member. Homework time on the family’s computer is not counted. Laptops and televisions should not be allowed in the bedroom. (Pro Tip: Look at your child’s WhatsApp “last seen” and you’ll know what time they truly sleep.) We can’t help but overeat snacks when watching television. Limit their screen time and they’ll naturally go to play outside getting the much-needed physical exercise.