According to a medical research, it has been noted that there has been an increase in childhood obesity in India in the last few years.
We have a problem in our society so massive that it can no longer be considered uncommon. It has been reported that the current generation of obese children may have a shorter life expectancy than their parents because of the rapid rise in childhood obesity. Obese children are more prone to heart diseases, type 2 diabetes, stroke, kidney failure and cancer.
- Children in their early teens who are obese and who have high triglyceride levels have arteries similar to those of 45- year-old people.
- Obese children younger than age 3 show indicators for developing heart disease later in life.
- Children who are overweight from the ages of 7-13 may develop heart disease as early as age 25.
- Obese children are more likely to die before age 55 than their similar peers.
A few suggestions to prevent your child from becoming overweight are-
- Encourage activities like riding a bicycle in the neighbourhood and playing games like badminton, kho-kho, swimming and skipping.
- Try to include activities like dancing, karate and yoga to bring about positive action in their lives.
- Establish family hours in your daily routine and utilise that time by playing games together, which involve physical activity.
Along with an increase in activity levels, it is also important to bring about small changes in diet.
These changes include-
1. Be a role model
Parents who don’t eat healthy cannot expect their children to eat healthy. Throw out all junk food items, chips, chocolates, soft drinks, white bread from the house and keep fresh fruits handy.
2. Check portion size
Give small servings to your child to bring discipline while eating. Teach him to avoid overeating.
3. Use healthy cooking oil
Cook food in healthy oils like Olive and canola oil. Check the quantity of oil, while cooking.
4.Replace soft drinks
Aerated drinks, even canned and sweetened fruit juices, are high in calories and low in nutritional value. Replace them with coconut water, low-fat milk, fresh fruit juices or vegetable juices.
Some important key tips for the parents are-
- Replace your child’s screen time with active games.
- Build activities in your child’s everyday routine.
- Involve yourself with your child’s activeness.
It is extremely important to make sure that your child stays as far away from these things as possible.
Read Also: Tips for staying healthy while ageing.