How Do We Fight Childhood Obesity?

By Dr. Adrienne Hicks  |   Submitted On July 27, 2015

Obesity is one of the fastest growing diseases to affect children today. Being an overweight child can contribute to many other health issues. The American Academy of Pediatrics has determined that there is a high probability that an overweight child will become an overweight adult. It is the job of our local communities and national organizations to educate and prevent future health problems stemming from Obesity from occurring.

Diseases, such as Hypertension and Diabetes, have been directly linked to Obesity. Other disorders, like Hypothyroidism and Asthma can also contribute to Obesity in children. If their thyroid gland if not functioning correctly, then their overall body functioning will be decreased. A respiratory disorder can also decrease the proper functioning of the human body, causing children to breath with difficulty and move sluggishly. If children are too tired to exercise or complete their daily activities, they will gain weight. An overweight child has probably already been diagnosed with or will be diagnosed with these health disparities in the future.

Children should live active lifestyles to stay physically fit and remain healthy throughout adulthood. The American Medical Association recommends people get at least thirty minutes of continuous cardiovascular exercise everyday. This includes children, who actually spend the majority of their day in front of a screen, such as a computer or video game. Daily exercise, not only keeps kids fit, but it stimulates their immune system to fight off infections and other diseases that can plague their bodies. Encourage your children to join a sports activity, such swimming, jogging, or playing tennis to increase their metabolism, so they can burn calories to lose weight.

Proper eating habits also decrease the risk of childhood Obesity and lower their chances of becoming an overweight adult. Everyone should eat the proper servings from the five basic food groups daily and refrain from cooking their foods in grease and oils. Eating the correct portion sizes will reduce excessive caloric intake and makes you accountable for the foods you consume from each food group. It is best to cook your foods with natural seasonings, such as bell peppers, garlic and onions to reduce adding extra salt to your meals.

We can overcome childhood Obesity with proper education and motivation. Parents should also take their children to the Pediatrician for their regular check-ups to make sure their health is improving. This can reduce the rate of adult Obesity, thereby lowering their overall cost of medical care and increasing their value of life. We can make a difference in the future of our children by making changes to their exercise and eating habits today.

To learn more ways to educate our children about a proper diet and daily exercise to prevent childhood Obesity, please contact Dr. Adrienne Hicks of Healthy Living Mississippi at [email protected].

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