Childhood Obesity

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I was busy thinking what to eat when my friend said, “He looks very cute!” while smiling and pointing to the chubby child beside a woman in thirties near our table inside a restaurant in the city. I nodded my head and smiled back to show that I agreed with her. “Hello! How old are you?” my friend asked the boy. We were both very surprised when the woman who introduced herself as the boy’s mother answered, “Eight!” because the boy’s body size was almost the same as his mom’s.

There is a rapid increase in numbers of obese children around the world today. This is alarming because there are complications that go with being obese. These are diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease! What are the contributing factors of childhood obesity? Studies show that most obesity cases are caused by children eating too much and lacking exercise.

What can parents do to help their children avoid excess weight and the dangers that come with it? Below are some helpful suggestions:

1. Buy fruits and vegetables instead of junk and canned foods.
2. Let your children drink 8 glasses of water a day and fresh fruit juices instead of letting them drink soft drinks and beverages that are high in fats and sugar.
3. Lessen the use of oil in cooking. Try steaming, baking, or broiling instead of frying.
4. Never let your children skip breakfast. It is the most important meal of the day. Skipping will make your children overeat later.
5. Do not let your children eat while watching a TV show or sitting in front of your computer. This will make them unaware of being full causing them to eat too much.
6. Let your children do their favourite physical activity like swimming, running, biking, playing balls and many others.
7. Assign your children active chores at home.
8. Make healthful eating a family habit.

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