The number of overweight children is quickly increasing, and many doctors are becoming more concerned about obesity in children because of the negative health effects that may occur. The problem with overweight children is that their chronic disease risk increases, and conditions that typically only occur in adults are starting to show up in the younger ages.
Obesity in children can lead to many health problems, including:
Many of these conditions were previously only found in adults, but they are becoming more common in children because there are so many overweight children. In order to reduce the risk of these serious health conditions, it is necessary for overweight children to lose the excess weight.
If obesity in children is ignored, it is likely that overweight children will continue to be overweight in their adulthood. The longer the excess weight is present, the more their disease risk factor will increase.
Another negative problem with obesity in children is the fact that the extra weight may cause the overweight children to have lower self esteem and less confidence. These psychological effects can affect the child for the rest of their life, especially when social discrimination and/or bullying are involved.
Our society is very focused on unhealthy foods, and some parents may feel that they are depriving their overweight children by restricting the types of foods that they are able to eat at home. Remember that there are treats and junk food at many different locations, such as school, church, social events, friend’s houses, parties, etc. Your child will have plenty of opportunities to eat treats, so it is important that you closely monitor the food that is eaten at home.
In order to reduce obesity in children, you should start out by making small changes to meal time. Include more fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. Also, reduce the amount of junk food and refined carbohydrates that are eaten. Even a few small changes can make a big difference in the long run, and these changes can help the overweight children to lose weight.
Be sure that you are a good example for your overweight children, because they will be watching your every move. If you are eating candy bars instead of fruits and vegetables, your child will question the reasons why they are supposed to eat their fruits and vegetables.
Additionally, it is important to reduce obesity in children by encouraging the children to move. Too many children spend hours every day in front of the TV or computer, and they are lacking in physical activity. Encouraging the children to go outside can help them to lose weight because they will burn more calories.
Obesity in children can be a dangerous condition, especially if the child continues to be overweight throughout their life. If your child is suffering from weight problems, be supportive and help them to learn more about how to create healthy daily habits.