Proper nutrition is a concern for all parents, whether you have a newborn or a blossoming teen. Promoting a healthy lifestyle through proper nutrition can help your child develop properly and maintain overall well-being.
Please ask your nurse or provider if you would like a referral to a registered dietitian.
Once an anomaly, childhood obesity has tripled in the past 30 years, becoming a national health epidemic. Health problems such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure may put them at serious risk for cardiovascular disease. They are more likely to have pre-diabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels indicate a high risk for development of diabetes. And, children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk for bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems such as stigmatization and poor self-esteem.
Is There Good News?
Yes! Obesity is an entirely preventable disease. With the proper nutrition, good eating habits, proper sleep, and reasonable amounts of exercise, children can prevent this disease and live a normal, healthy life!
How Can I Get Involved?
As a parent, your relationship to your child is crucial when it comes to developing healthy habits that will last a lifetime. Since you probably do all the shopping and cooking, you can easily control what foods enter the home and how they are prepared and in what quantities. It's also a great idea to get moving together; get the whole family involved in an after-dinner walk, swim or bike-ride. Try out lots of different sports, and encourage your child's participation. If you must play video games, encourage games that have an athletic component to them (such as Wii Fit or Dance 3). Whatever you do, just get moving!
Are There Other Resources?
Click these links for more information about this topic, and practical solutions to address it in your own family: