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3 Effective Tips To Prevent Obesity In Children
Obesity is an accumulation of extra fat in human body which tends to create physical disturbances in the form of ailments like high blood pressure, diabetes, anorexia, liver problems, asthma, early puberty, heart attack etc.
Obesity in children can be caused due to overeating, thyroid, wrong time of food intake, sleeping immediately after eating and lack of physical activity. For Instance, children between the age 1-10 require 1300-2000 calories a day. An active child will require more calories than less active child.
But if the calories are not absorbed by the body it results in turning the child overweight. Certain medical conditions can also cause obesity, but these are very rare. They include inherited disorders of metabolism or other chemical and hormone imbalances. At an early age parents should train the child to have proper food habits and regular physical exercises to avoid obesity. There are some precautionary measures that can be adopted to avoid obesity in children.
Healthy diet helps in preventing accumulation of Fat
A balanced diet is essential to maintain appropriate body weight. There should be balanced intake of proteins, minerals, calcium, vitamins, carbohydrates and fats in the food. Fats are of 2 types’ saturated fats and unsaturated fats. Unsaturated fats comprise of home made butter, avocados, nuts, while saturated fat are processed foods like meat, chips etc.
Therefore, unsaturated fats should be added to the diet in place of saturated as they are harmful to the health. In Children Proteins are required in more quantity because they act as a source of muscle generation. Proteins can be acquired through Milk, soya, cereals, Pulses etc while green leafy vegetables and fruits help in getting adequate vitamins and minerals necessary for maintaining good eyesight, healthy skin and hair.
It is however very important to avoid junk food like noodles, colas, chocolates, candies, ice creams which these days is in vogue among children. Fast Food in the form of burgers, pizzas, pasta is making children overweight in no time. Hence, it is alarming and expensive proposition to compromise heath over taste. Intelligence conforms in eating food of taste but healthy at the same time.
However, children should be offered variety of foods, including sweets. All foods have a place in a healthy diet, even foods high in fat and calories-as long as they are eaten occasionally and in moderation. It is advisable to avoid desserts after the meals as they result in addition of extra layer of fats. If the child is thirsty water should be provided to quench his thirst and not sodas or sugary drinks
Balanced quantity and right time to have the meal
Quantity of food intake needs to be given due consideration. It is important to guide children to eat patiently and to help choose what to eat and how much. A considerably heavy breakfast than dinner is desirable because it gives energy to the child for the whole day and also leads to easy burning of calories during day than at night when body is at rest.
A time gap of at least 2 hours between dinner and retiring to bed is of utmost important to avoid obesity. There are certain food items like rice which are high in fat content and are therefore required to be avoided eating in dinner.
Moreover on a daily basis if chapatti or wheat bread is taken in place of rice it would be rather more beneficial. It is important not to feed the child when he or she is not hungry. A toddler is required to be given small meals throughout day rather than feeding large quantities at a time.
Physical Activity is very important
As we all know the present lifestyle of children has become sedentary. They like to engage in non active hobbies like playing games in computers or spending time in lying and watching television. It is highly essential for a child to have some outdoor activity so that it helps them burn the calories and avoid the accumulation of fat in the body. Exercising in the form of Yoga or Aerobics can help in keeping children fit and in good shape.
Physical Training (P.T) is given in most schools, with a limitation that it is not included in the daily time table. This requires amendment whereby P.T is imparted as daily routine. One of the most entertaining ways of maintaining active lifestyle in children is playing outdoor games.
Outdoor games include, Running, Skating, riding a bicycle, Swimming , Badminton , Lawn tennis, Basket ball, Baseball, Volley Ball, Soccer etc. which the child may choose according to his or her liking. Dance is another form of physical activity where unknowingly a child burns fats. The child undertakes dance as a means to rejoice but it gives him the advantage of remaining healthy as well.
Obesity is a disorder which can cause serious damages not only in child’s body but also to his mental state. An obese child may have to suffer harassment due to passing of remarks by fellow children. The situation may lead to mental breakdown in child or cause serve depression. Moreover at an early age, bulky figure may hinder level of activity and bring a decline in the child’s overall productivity.
Prevention is therefore better than Cure where children should not be allowed to watch television for long hours or play video games. To fill void time sports can be included in their regime which will be entertaining and heath making. In early childhood children should be taught to play outdoor games. Have an active life and not allow munching of in between snacks while watching television or playing games on computers.
The most important thing is not to ridicule the children about their being obese rather being supportive and explain them the benefits of being fit this will help tremendously. The body will shed weight if the mind directs to do so. Therefore, the prime motive is to train their mind in understanding the ill effects of obesity. These steps are effective enough to help the child get rid of and prevent this disorder.