One of the greatest health issues facing children today is child obesity. The condition can be caused by numerous factors, and what is more significant is responsible for numerous health problems. Cardio-vascular disease, and diabetes to name just a few. These health concerns have repercussions not only in the present, but also in their future lives. Just because of this, it is essential to nurture a healthy lifestyle in your children, and to watch out for any psychological and social factors that may be governing rapid weight gain. It is up to parents to promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, monitor their kids’ eating habits, development, and make it an interesting experience at the same time.
Psychological Causes of Child Obesity
Obesity in children is most of the times the cause of some psychological disorder. Kids suffering from depression have a tendency to withdraw emotionally, and search for comfort by eating excessively. Known as binge eating, children try to replace negative emotions by stimulating their serotonin levels through food. Parents need to initiate an open conversation to find out the causes, and seek out professional child councilors. Another psychological cause of obesity is over-stimulation and subsequent boredom. Through modern technology children’s senses are bombarded throughout the day, leaving children unmotivated to engage in daily activities, and idly spend the day eating.
Social Implications of Obesity among Children
Obesity also can be caused by social issues, but also has social implications in its own right. Bullying and peer discrimination of obese children leads to social detachment, and can even be followed by social anxiety. Kids will try to cope by eating, to boost their low self-esteem. Parents can help kids by enlisting them into professional pre-school centers, where all kids are supervised, and the teachers can be aware of your child’s problems. Also, parents themselves need to find ways of boosting their child’s confidence that best suits them. Ultimately this will avert them from finding solace in food, and face negative emotions directly, and not by withdrawal, and detachment.
Promoting Healthy Eating Habits
Promoting safe and healthy life to kids’ means encouraging them to take up healthy eating habits. They need to understand the value of breakfast, and having regular daily meals. Moreover, these meals need to account for their development during childhood, and incorporate variety into their diet. Store-bought snacks high in sodium, and fats, can be replaced with vegetables, as a nutritious alternative. Also reduce their sugar intake, especially from sodas, by providing them fresh, home-made juice.
Keeping Kids Busy
By keeping kids occupied, in essence you deter them from eating. Enroll kids to various extracurricular activities that can be a way to improve their development, both physical and mental, and pursue new interests and skills. Sport in itself has the ability to promote a healthy lifestyle by filling their daily requirements for exercise, all the while keeping them busy. As for other activities, try and spark kids creative sides by encouraging them to take up an instrument, or sign them up for a another language. They will be improving their character, which will take their minds off of food.
Promoting an Active Outdoor Lifestyle
Another aspect of an active lifestyle involves getting kids to go outside. Spending too much time locked in front of the screen, TV or computer, is of major concern, so parents need to appeal to their kids need to have fun. Encourage them to socialize with other children on bicycle rides, or arrange family hiking trips. You can also make nerf game party that incorporate various physical activities set in a fun party environment. And during rainy days when they have to be inside, encourage them to take up great children’s books, or play with their toys, to aid their development.
In the end, parents need to watch out for their child’s psychological growth, and social acceptance. Also seek out professionals help if necessary. In promoting a healthy lifestyle prevent child obesity and maintain his/her health for years to come.