Kids Obesity: The Complete Story
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Childhood obesity occurs when kids have too much body fat. Kids Obesity can be curtailed with a healthy family.

Understanding Kids Obesity

Kids Obesity and kids being overweight are terms that you might hear when children have too much body fat that presents a risk to their health.

Kids Obesity occurs when the energy children get from food and drinks is greater than the energy they burn up through physical activity, growing and other body processes. This extra energy gets stored as fat.

Some children are also at greater risk of kids obesity because of genetic factors that make their bodies gain weight more easily.

What Can You Do to Help Kids with Kids Obesity

Many factors can put children at a higher risk of becoming overweight and obese. These factors include:

  • Unhealthy food and drink choices
  • Unhealthy family habits
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Family genetic history
  • Other environmental factors.

You can help your child maintain a healthy weight and avoid kids obesity by looking at how these factors shape your family’s lifestyle.

Food Choices

If you give your child a range of healthy nutritious food, it will help your child grow and develop in a healthy way. Your child will also be less likely to gain too much body fat and suffer from kids obesity.

Healthy nutritious foods include vegetables, fruits, grains, reduced-fat dairy, meat, fish, chicken, eggs and legumes such as peas, beans and lentils.

Physical Activity

You can encourage your child to be physically active by walking when possible and playing outdoors. Physical activity will:

  • Balance your child’s energy intake and help them avoid kids obesity
  • Control your child’s appetite
  • Decrease your child’s stress
  • Prevent disease
  • Increase social interactions.

All these things are part of an overall healthy lifestyle for your child.

Family Habits

Your child is more likely to make healthy food choices and be active if she sees you eating healthily and being active. Young children do as you do, so modelling healthy eating and regular exercise can have a big impact.

Family genetic history and other factors

Everyone comes in different shapes and sizes, partly because of lifestyle, but also because of genes.

Some children are at greater risk of obesity because of their genes, or because they have health problems or take medication. If you have any of these factors in your family, it’s even more important for you all to make healthy food and lifestyle choices.

If you’re worried that your child might have obese, it’s important to start with a proper assessment.

A GP, paediatrician or dietitian can look at your child’s growth and work out whether he has a healthy weight or is suffering from kids obesity. The health professional might look at your child’s height, weight and body mass index (BMI). BMI is one way of adding up total body fat and working out whether your child’s weight is within a healthy average range.

If your child is overweight, you can make many small changes to help your child. If you involve the whole family in these changes, it’s easier for your child to stick with the changes – and it’s good for everyone.

Here are simple changes you can make to everyday family eating:

  • Involve your children in choosing and preparing healthy foods for meals. This helps them learn about healthy foods and making good choices. They’re also more likely to eat something they’ve helped to make.
  • Get your child drinking water, and keep soft drink, juices, cordials, sports drinks, flavoured waters and flavoured milks out of the house.
  • Eat more vegetables and salad. Aim to fill half the plate at main meals with salad or vegetables.
  • Have healthy snacks handy for when you know your child will be hungry. For example, keep a bowl of fresh fruit on the bench and a container of veggie sticks in the fridge.
  • Don’t force your child to eat. You don’t need to worry if your child refuses to eat or eats very little. Your child won’t starve.

Here are simple changes you can make to get more physical activity into your family’s life:

  • Restrict screen time to no more than two hours a day for children aged 5-18 years. Screen time includes TV, DVDs, computers, video games, mobiles phones and tablets.
  • Give your child the chance for active play. Your child needs at least one hour a day of physical activity.
  • Build activity into everyday family life – for example, go for family walks or bike rides together.
  • Walk to and from school, the local shops or friends’ places if possible.

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