Obesity is a serious condition that can affect anyone, but it has become more rampant in children within the last few years. According to the Center for Disease Control, nearly 18% of children and teens in the United States are considered obese, a number that has almost tripled since 1980.
Childhood obesity is not something to be overlooked. It’s not a phase that kids will grow out of. It’s a serious issue that if not taken control of early, can abbreviate the child’s life, taking away years from their adulthood.
As a result of obesity, children can develop type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, respiratory problems, and more. While every child’s genetic makeup is different where some can lend to certain bodily issues, no child should have to suffer obesity.
There are many things that you can do as a parent. There is no one right way for each child, but knowing your child and getting to know their activities is a great place to start.
Take an interest in their diet and activity levels. What do they eat while they’re away from home, such as their school lunch? Do they get exercise at school as part of their daily routine? Even if these habits are good, take it one step further and find a way to integrate healthy habits into more areas of their life.
You are an example to your child, so one of the best ways to help them have a healthy diet and activity level is to have those areas of your life healthy as well. The best way to encourage a child to do something is to do it yourself.
For more information, statistics and tips, visit the Center for Disease Control at cdc.gov. When you help yourself, you ultimately help your child better their life as well.