Childhood Obesity Cannot Be Ignored

September 8, 2013

With one in three children in the United States being obese or overweight, the seriousness of childhood obesity cannot be ignored. Statistics show that children who are obese (compared to those of an average weight) are five times more likely to become obese adults.  It is without a doubt that we are failing our children and, in turn, failing them as they become adults.

Childhood obesity is preventable and that very fact should not and cannot be lost by parents.  Our children are at risk for a host of diseases that were once only related to and seen in adults.  It is our responsibility to teach our children healthy eating and lifestyle habits.  Here are five ways parents can help to make a difference in the fight against childhood obesity:

1. Serve your children water when they ask for a drink and keep them away from the drinks with added sugars.

2.  Schedule time each day for physical activity. It is recommended that children get at least 60 minutes of exercise each day.

3.  Select a daycare center that serves healthy snacks and drinks and be sure that physical activity is incorporated into their day.

4.  Limit the amount of time that your child spends in front of the TV or any other electronic device.  Check to make sure your daycare center is doing the same! The American Academy of Pediatrics advises that children spend no more than 1-2 hours a day on any programming devices.

5.  Be sure to have plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables available for healthy snacking.

Together, one parent at a time, we can make a difference in the fight against childhood obesity.