Childhood Obesity is a Serious Medical ProblemSponsored Story
SAN ANGELO, TX -- There is a childhood obesity epidemic in America that will affect our children for the rest of their lives if we do not do something about it.
Thirty percent of patients pediatricians see are obese, 10 percent morbidly obese, and many will remain so throughout life.
Being overweight is a major contributing factor to diabetes, heart disease and stroke, cancer, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, asthma, and more. Obesity also can have a psychological impact of lower self-esteem and other emotional issues for children.
If your child is overweight, address this issue now. Here are some responsible ways:
Encourage healthy eating habits.
- Provide plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole-grain products.
- Get protein from lean meats, poultry, fish, lentils, and beans.
- Serve reasonably-sized portions.
- Drink lots of water.
- Limit intake of sugar-sweetened beverages, sugar, sodium, and saturated fat.
Replace calorie-rich temptations with healthy ones
- Treats are OK in moderation, but should not be available on demand.
- Healthy alternatives include a medium-size apple or banana, or a cup of blueberries, grapes, carrots, or broccoli.
- Children should participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity most days of the week—every day if possible. When you participate with your child, you not only set a good example for them, it is good for your health, too.
- Examples of moderate-intensity activities include brisk walking, swimming, jumping rope, playing tag, soccer, aerobic dancing, water aerobics, light bicycling, doubles tennis, softball, shooting basketballs, golf if you wheel or carry your clubs.
Discourage sedentary activities
- Limit TV, video games, and internet use to no more than two hours a day. Zero TV for children age two or younger.
- Quiet time for reading and homework is fine.
Consult your pediatrician about weight loss
- Weight loss should be gradual and achieved by using methods described above.
- Crash and fad diets are inappropriate for children and can harm them. Any diet that severely limits or eliminates a food group is unhealthy, especially for children, and should not be followed for any reason.
For more information or to make an appointment with one of our providers, call Community Medical Associates pediatrics at 245-4301.