Combating Childhood Obesity
With childhood obesity on the rise, currently 20% of 6-8 year olds in the US are considered obese (CDC, 2012), yet this is also one of the most preventable diseases (Nieman, n.d.), there are many steps parents can take to make sure their children stay healthy and active. Even though it may seem tough with all the temptations a child faces, parents are #1 factor in deciding if their child will be obese or healthy (Ashworth, 2005). Parents are faced with school-age children being tempted by sugary drinks and sweets, televisions, computers and media. By taking the first steps to encourage your child and family to get up, be active and maintain a healthy diet, you will already start to prevent obesity.
Prevention of childhood obesity is indeed better than a cure (Nieman, n.d.). Childhood obesity is normally linked to three factors; genetic, overeating and not enough exercise (Nieman, n.d.). Unfortunately we are not able to change our genes given to us, we can make the choice to eat healthier and exercise more. Children’s views are in large affected by their parents and peers, and by leading with good examples as a parent you are helping to prevent obesity (Nieman, n.d.).
Teaching your child how to eat healthy and make healthy food choices will be a large preventative factor in the combat against obesity. Children at a school age level are more independent with making choices on how they eat (DiLonardo, 2011). Encouraging your child to make healthy choices by explaining to them by making these healthy choices it also makes our bodies healthier and stronger. By letting your child assist with picking out fruits and vegetables at the grocery store, then allowing them to help prepare meals for the families gets them more involved and eager to make the better choices (DiLonardo, 2011). By creating family meals that include fresh produce at each meal this will expand a child’s...