How To Get Rid Of Obesity In Children

Courtesy-of-flickr-user-robad0b‘Obesity’, is becoming an alarming problem in children. It is growing rapidly and more and more children are getting engulfed by it everyday. Extra pounds can induce several serious ailments in children such as, diabetes, heart disease, asthma, high blood pressure, joint aches, liver issues, gall bladder problems etc. Overweight children are bullied frequently and are also isolated from group activities. These factors might lead to low self-esteem, depression, irritation, trauma, public phobia etc. It can also lead to the occurrence of various eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia. Eating disorders can prove to be extremely disastrous and fatal, if left untreated and unattended. Obese children are also inclined towards substance abuse, smoking, drinking etc., because they develop negative body images which takes an emotional toll on them.

It is not always easy to predict whether a child is overweight or not. Children grow at different rates, at different times and circumstances. Body Mass Index(BMI), can be measured, to evaluate obesity. BMI is usually a good indicator, but it’s not perfect, because a child’s weight fluctuates rapidly due to changing hormones, unsteady metabolism and onset of puberty.

obesity-in-childrenIt’s recommendable to consult your health care provider to figure out whether your child is obese or not. They will use certain procedures such as skin fold thickness measurements, diet evaluations, genetic research, physical activity assessments and various other appropriate health screenings to assess the result.

There are various reasons that lead to obesity. Most cases of childhood obesity are caused due to overeating and diminished physical activities. Children need an adequate amount of calories to grow and develop healthily, but, if the ingested calories are not appropriately burnt, it can result in weight gain.

There are many factors behind this imbalance, such as:

  • Eating out frequently due to erratic work schedules.
  • Easy access to high calorie, fast foods or junk foods.
  • Ingesting bigger food portions.
  • Diminished physical activities in kids due to increased TV viewing and computer usage.
  • Many schools are eliminating their physical education programmes and enforcing solely on enhancing grades.

Healthy Habits initiate at home. The best alternative to fight your children’s obesity is to get your whole family on a healthier track and not just your kid. Start leading by example. Making smart food choices and implementing a healthy lifestyle will benefit one and all. There are many ways to help your child beat the bulge. They are:

  • Eat the rainbow: Serve a variety of different fruits and vegetables ranging from oranges, kiwis, avocados, artichokes, radishes, spinach, pears, jack fruits etc. Use a variety of herbs in your dishes to make them look attractive like coriander, parsley, mint, curry leaves etc. It is better to eat the vegetables raw or add them to soups or salads. Try steaming and stewing instead of frying and grilling.
  • Make breakfast a priority: Children who regularly eat a wholesome breakfast, are less likely to be overweight, than the ones who don’t. Try serving wholesome foods like oatmeals, fresh fruits, whole grain cereal, and low-fat milk instead of sugary cereals or toaster pastries.
  • Schedule regular timely meals: Most children adhere to routine. If they are aware that they will get food only at certain timings, then they are most likely to eat well when their meals are served. Hence, they will cling to a diet routine rather than binge eating, which will greatly help in manipulating their weight.
  • Limit dining out: It is always advisable to eat home cooked food rather than eating out. But, if you must, then try to stick to healthier choices and order small portions. Always have dinner by 8 p.m., because after that the metabolism slows down.
  • Limit juice and soda: Soft drinks are very harmful for a person willing to loose weight. They are filled with empty calories. They have zero nutritional content and are loaded with fats. They even cause several kidney and bladder problems. Instead of soda, offer your child sparkling water with a twist of lime or fruit juice.
  • Don’t over snack: Limit the snacks to about 100-150 calories. Having three healthy snacks per day, at timely intervals, is healthy, but more then that is not. Try consuming nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, almonds etc. for snacks. Dry fruits are also a very good option. Eat snacks sensibly, don’t turn them into meals.

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  • Use Moringa: The Moringa tree was originally discovered in the Himalayas, India. Currently,it is extensively cultivated in many other regions such as Africa, South America, Philippines etc., for food or for harvesting medicinal products. The Moringa tree is an excellent source of vitamins A, B, C & E and minerals such as calcium, potassium, iron etc. It comprises of 95 total nutrients. It helps convert food to energy and hence diminishes the storage of fat. They can be consumed in multiple ways. It is a ┬ávery proficient food substitute for dieters. It is a low fat food, that is rampant in nutrients.
  • Enroll your child in after school activities: Encouraging children to step outside and participate in outdoor activities is always a good option. It is very beneficial for the child. The child not only gets entertained and thrilled during the process, but by doing so, they can also loose weight faster. Hence, enrolling them in play groups or any after school activity is a very good idea.
  • Focus on fruits: Fruits have numerous antioxidants. They are abundant in vitamins and minerals. They are extremely low fat but highly nutritious. They can rejuvenate the entire system and boost up the metabolism.
  • Do chores together: Mopping, sweeping, dish washing, dusting or vacuuming burns numerous calories and can make your child dynamic and less lethargic. Children might be unwilling at first, but involving them in household chores is a very good idea.
  • Limit daily screen time and stop eating in front of the TV: Prevent your child from becoming a couch potato. Eating in front of the TV is a very spoilt and unfit habit. It not only compromises your family time, but it also induces severe weight gain and obesity. Make sure your child eats his/her meals timely in the dining table.

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