According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 17 percent of children suffer from childhood obesity. If someone is overweight, he or she could be at a higher risk for developing health issues later in life. To help protect your child's health now and in the future, here are some tips for dealing with obesity.
Remember Your Influence Over Your Child's Decisions
As a parent, you are your child's first teacher. He or she watches and listens to you to learn about the world. Your child also pays attention to your eating and exercise habits.
One of the most effective means of overcoming childhood obesity is to model good behavior for your child. For instance, focus on eating fewer sweets and more healthy treats, such as vegetables. You can also stress the importance of exercising by engaging in physical activities with your child. Instead of sitting inside playing video games, take your child to the playground or go hiking.
Involve Your Child in Grocery Shopping and Cooking
Your child needs to learn the difference between healthy and unhealthy foods. A good way to help your child identify which foods are good for him or her is to take your child grocery shopping with you. While shopping, take the time to teach your child about how to read food labels. If you are unsure of how to understand food nutrition labels, the United States Food and Drug Administration has a resource available to read online.
Once you are home, continue to teach your child about the importance of eating healthy by allowing him or her to help with preparing meals. As you and your child prepare meals, show him or her how to create fun and healthy meals.
Talk to Your Pediatrician
One of the best resources you have at your disposal in the fight against childhood obesity is your child's pediatrician. The pediatrician can talk to your child about the importance of being at a healthy weight and what problems can occur if he or she is not committed to good health.
Your child's pediatrician can also help you and your child understand other measures that can be taken to get your child on the right road with his or health. In addition to these measures, the pediatrician can monitor your child's progress and make adjustments to the weight loss regimen he or she recommends to ensure your child's success. For more information, contact a clinic, such as Entira Family Clinics.