Reducing the Risk of Childhood Obesity through Environment Adjustments

Childhood obesity is a growing problem in many parts of the world. According to experts, besides the genetic contribution, the child’s environment is a big contributor to this problem. Therefore, you as a parent can take measures to avoid such a ‘catastrophe’ and help your child live a healthy, happy and an extended life.

Why childhood obesity is considered a ‘catastrophe’?

Medical experts have uncovered that being obese can increase the risk of many different medical problems out of which some can even end up in fatal outcomes. Obese children are found to be more susceptible towards developing heart diseases probably because their blood cholesterol levels are high throughout their lives. They are also at risk of developing diabetes and related disorders. Furthermore, obesity can give rise to bone problems, psychological issues as well as reproductive system abnormalities as the child step into his or her adulthood. Given these facts, you should realize that it is prudent to consider childhood obesity as a catastrophe and that you should take every possible measure to prevent your child from suffering for his or her entire life.

How can you adjust the child’s environment to promote healthy living?

According to research, parents should pay more attention towards ensuring healthy living rather than concentrating more about whether their child is eating a plateful for each and every meal. Children should realize that they should eat only when they feel hungry and not because they are suppose to eat as a routine. Allowing the natural processes to take over the feeding cycle is perhaps the best way for you to prevent unhealthy eating practices in your children.

 Another important environmental adjustment that you can do is to limit the amount of time spent in front of the TV by you as well as by your children. Researchers have found that there is a direct link between the time spent in front of the TV and the susceptibility towards being obese. Watching excessive TV would mean that your child would remain physically inactive for a longer period and therefore the metabolic processes running inside the body would remain idle. As a result, more energy will be deposited in the body as fat. Furthermore, the advertisements that encourage fast-foods and other high energy snacks will greatly influence your child’s thinking pattern and therefore their eating habits as well.

You should always make it a point to promote your children to participate in sporting activities or at least in outdoor play activities. These are essential for the child to grow and to burn the excess energy. In its absence, the risk of childhood obesity may increase by many folds. Thus, instead of buying your child a video game, you can think of buying a play tool that will engage him or her in a physical activity.

Having a garden is of immense value for a child to grow healthily and if available, you should make the maximum use of such a space. Setting up play areas with engaging play tools may be expensive although extremely worthwhile. You yourself should engage in more and more outdoor activities as the children will look-up to their parents when adjusting their behavioral patterns.

Having a pet dog may be something that you can think about as it can provide young children with considerable amount of energy burning activity. In addition, your child should also receive a considerable share of household chores in order to keep him or herself busy.

How can you protect your child from being obese because of external forces?

When the child leaves home, many external factors would drag your child towards bad eating habits. Thus, you as a parent should make sure your child do not engage in such practices at least not up to a level that would increase the risk of childhood obesity. At the same time, you should always encourage your child to take part in extracurricular activities including sports activities at school as much as possible.

Thus, it is apparent that the role played by you as the parent in preventing your child’s obesity risk is considerable. Therefore, you should actively pursue these strategies as much as possible to make yourself worthy of being considered a conscious and a caring parent.