In 2004, a film shocked and called the attention of the public about the interesting and even shocking revelations regarding food and poor nutrition. Sure many will know that I speak of the documentary film entitled Super Size Me, which takes the viewer on a tour really awesome and it is the current American diet (fast food or fast food and junk food) and its severe consequences such as poor nutrition and obesity affecting so disturbing to very young children.
What is obesity?
Obesity is a pathological condition which can be defined as excessive accumulation of fat in the body, a condition that leads to a myriad of ailments such as heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, fatigue, shortness of breath, constipation, problems intestinal cancer, cysts, hemorrhoids, and so on.
In many countries as Spain, Chile, Mexico and United States, overweight in school-age children has doubled in recent years. This has been a concern not only for parents and educators but by the health experts who claim that the main reasons for weight gain in children is due to the great neglect of food and misinformation or food culture that exists in those countries.
Obesity is a common problem in children, and often a very poorly attended that can affect most severe problems while the child grows. It is estimated that today in many countries, one in ten children presented problems of obesity on reaching ten years.
What exactly causes obesity in children?
The evidence suggests that it is a disease with multifactorial origin, as it may be genetic in origin, psychological, environmental, and so on. Here are the most common causes that can trigger the overweight child:
- Harmful fat: fried foods and overly rich in animal fats.
- Diet: low food quality or low nutrient content (such as processed foods) or poorly balanced.
- Refined sugar: a high content of refined or white sugar in the diet and products containing it as the soft drink primarily.
- Eating between meals: excess bread, biscuits, fried foods, candy, ice cream, etcetera.
- Lack of activity: spending most of the time watching TV or playing video games. Lack of mobility or physical activity.
- Emotions: A child emotionally tense, anxious, confused or with emotional deprivation is more likely to suffer from overweight.
Obesity has become a really significant issue, not only at the aesthetic level, but well, since it leads to suffering serious health risks and influence on the psychosocial development of children, and it is the risk extends into adulthood.
So if you have or know a obese child, do not hesitate to begin to implement the following tips:
- Physical activity: Encourage children to practice physical activities. It is very important to walk, go to the park to run or play games. If you can join a soccer team or something they prefer, do it.
- Food culture: Explain to children the benefits of foods and highlight those that are harmful and those that help to maintain our body healthy. At school, it must be supported with educational materials (the film cited at the beginning of this article gives very good results with children) and works with talks and guided them.
- Diet: if the child is obese, we must take care of the diet at all costs, ie, begin to give foods that really feed and not just fill. We must avoid thoughtless abuse primarily of soft drinks and foods that contain refined sugars, processed and fried foods. For example, we must begin to stop eating food by its appearance or feeling of satiety, food that does not carry the nutrients and vitamins necessary for children to grow strong and healthy.
- Start new habits in the diet: you know, it's easy to say but difficult to implement. However, children of school age are still very docile for positive influence. If at home, for example, explain to the child that there will be no more sodas, but if we are strong and act with love and not give in to blackmail, the child gradually get used to.
- Age for building habits: remember that childhood is the age where you build the habits that often persist until the adult stage. If the child is carried through a strong and respectful way, the child undoubtedly will have positive habits.
- Educate with food: food education is something that children should, first, to see and absorb from their parents. If the parent does not have healthy habits, it will be difficult for the child to develop. However, if you are a parent or a guide that does not have, healthy habits, this should not be an impediment. The child wanting to plant and build healthy habits is the starting point and is the most important. So you can start to be a friend of your child and learn about proper nutrition and healthy, and with the small share what you learn. In this way include, or at least begin a process of understanding regarding the new changes in diet or both of the family. This kind of closeness, explanation and encourage consideration, in addition, coexistence, and lower levels of anxiety and stress in children.
- Find a good dietitian: This option is always a good alternative to prevent and help obese kids.
Many interesting points should be addressed on this issue. But broadly speaking we have the key. Hopefully, we do not wait and begin today to consider the adequacy of healthy habits not only for love of you, but for respect for children.