Childhood Obesity Parents

Child obesity prevention — begins at home. Here's what can you do as a parent to help preventing childhood obesity and create a healthy-weight environment for the entire family.

childhood obesity parentsChildhood obesity is usually caused by high calorie intake and exercising too little (see childhood obesity causes). The solution is eating healthier foods and increasing physical activity, but it'll be tough for your child to do it alone. Parents often misjudge the health risk of obesity in children (see childhood obesity effects), & the complexity in accomplishing and sustaining habitual changes connected with child obesity prevention. Parent education is a best way for childhood obesity prevention which should focus on encouragement of breastfeeding, detection of signals of satiety, selection of healthy lifestyle habits.

Studies show that parents are usually their kid’s most pivotal role model. Kids who see parents having healthy foods and being physically active (see childhood obesity physical activity) are more likely to do the same. As parents or other care givers, you may also ask: What steps can you take to help prevent child obesity? This page gives answers to some of the questions and provides you with plans to help you keep your family healthy.

American Obesity Association survey showed that:

The majority of parents in the U.S. (78 percent) believe that physical education or recess should not be reduced or replaced with academic classes. Almost 30 percent of parents said that they are "somewhat" or "very" concerned about their children's weight.

12 percent of parents considered their child overweight. Comparing their own childhood health habits to their children's, 27 percent of parents said their children eat less nutritiously, and 24 percent said their children are less physically active.

35 percent of parents rated their children's school programs for teaching good patterns of eating and physical activity to prevent obesity as "poor," "non-existent," or "don't know."(see childhood obesity school)

Among six choices of what they believed to be the greatest risk to their children's long-term health and quality of life, 5.6 percent of parents chose "being overweight or obese." More parents selected other choices as the greatest risk: alcohol (6.1 percent), sexually transmitted disease (10 percent), smoking (13.3 percent), violence (20.3 percent), and illegal drugs (24 percent).

In terms of their own behavior, 61 percent of parents said that it would be either "not very difficult" or "not at all difficult" to change their eating and/or physical activity patterns if it would help prevent obesity in any of their children.

Be a positive role model:

Parents are the most important role models for children. Your behaviors teach your child to choose correct diet (see childhood obesity diet), how much to eat and when to eat. Children will have the habit of exercising if you stay physically active (see childhood obesity exercise). Lifestyle changes can be difficult at times, mainly if you're busy dealing with the demands of daily life. However, if a family works collectively and motivate efforts done, success is likely to achieve. Gradually, healthy habits will become schedule and you'll help to prevent obesity in children and improving your family's overall health.Some suggestions on how you can be a positive role model for your child:

childhood obesity parents► Be physically active every day.
► Eat healthy foods (see childhood obesity food) avoid fast foods & junk foods in the house.
► Control your portion sizes.
► Save treats and high-calorie foods for special occasions (see childhood obesity nutrition).
► Limit the screen time by turning off the TV.
► Concentrate on the importance of healthy lifestyle choices, rather than a number on the scale.

Make behavioral changes in family:

The most efficient way for child obesity prevention is to implement healthier habits in the entire family. Not only your child, promote the whole family to make healthy lifestyle changes. Steady changes are easiest to include into the daily schedule — and to sustain long term. Start by making a few small changes in your family, Here are few tips;

Make sure your child gets enough sleep each night. A recent research has found that with each extra hour of sleep, the risk of a child obesity obese dropped by 9 percent. Most children under age 5 need to sleep for 11 hours or more per day, children age 5 to 10 need 10 hours of sleep or more per day, and children over age 10 need at least 9 hours per day.

preventing childhood obesityLimit screen time by turning off the TV during meal. Replace soft drinks to milk or water, or activating family physically after a dinner.

You need to locate reasonable, target for each family member, and then decide family goals. For example, your goal might be to take a vigorous walk four days a week and your kid’s goal might be to eat fruit for afternoon snacks. Generally, your family's goal might be to limit fast-food meals to once a month.

Pay good attention to your children that can help keep your family motivated. Offer praise and attention when your child asks for fruit rather than cookies after school.

Motivate everyone to attach to the plan. Focus on healthy lifestyle changes, rather than your child's appearance or a number on the scale. If the goals aren't working for your family, consider making adjustments. It's better to create a new plan than to stick to one that isn't working.

Motivate your child in understanding why you and the whole family are making these changes:

family making mealSupport and motivate your children. This is very important when things are changing, even when the changes are for their better health. Children may have emotional breakdown because of their loss of favorite foods, limitations of TV viewing. So, be sure that kids know the entire family is bringing these changes together. Let them play a part in these changes whenever you can by helping to shop for healthy foods, preparing meals, setting the table, and being a part of family talk at mealtimes. Let them choose and lead family activities, and let them be the “coach.” Remember that change can be a source of stress. Knowing that you love them is their source of strength.

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childhood obesity dietChildhood Obesity Diet
Provide a variety of foods, including plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Use salt (sodium) and sugars in moderation. Encourage a diet low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Help your child maintain a healthy weight by providing proper foods. [Read More]
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Start exercising together. The best way you can ensure that your child gets plenty of aerobic play time is to lead the way. Again, this is a family affair. Become involved in your child’s daily exercise. Be enthusiastic and creative about finding ways to stay active. [Read more]


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Foods which are being sold in the cafeteria should be considered for nutritional content. When students pass through a serving line, they should be given simple, easy-to-understand information on the items they select. [Read more]
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