As a nation we continue to fight the battle of obesity – struggling to modify our diets and physical activity in order to positively impact our weight. Unfortunately, the reality of our society works against our efforts in many cases; our busy schedules do not often allow for time devoted to exercise; and convenience foods have become the staples at family tables – often highly processed foods that contain exorbitant amounts of saturated fat, sodium, and sugar. It's no wonder, therefore, that the battle against obesity extends beyond adults. Childhood obesity has become something of an epidemic in this country, spawning a generation of young people at elevated risk for a variety of obesity-related diseases. Therefore, finding a child obesity solution is paramount in the minds of researchers, doctors, and parents alike.
Childhood obesity affects children ages six through eleven and is marked by an over 32% body fat percentage in girls and an over 25% body fat percentage in boys. There are many different causes of obesity in children – ranging from medical catalysts and genetic predisposition to poor lifestyle choices. Finding an effective child obesity solution depends on pinpointing the cause of the obesity in each particular child.
Of course, in the face of medical reasons, the child obesity solution often lies in the appropriate medicine as administrated by a doctor. In the face of genetics, often lifestyle choices will simply exacerbate an already existing propensity for obesity. In fact, lifestyle choices are often the most compelling trigger for child obesity. Therefore, an effective child obesity solution in this case depends on making lifestyle configurations that will foster good health and an appropriate weight.
Of course, lifestyle factors that contribute to obesity include diet and exercise. Often, those children suffering from obesity are making poor food choices – such as fried foods, processed foods, and foods high in saturated fats, sugar, and salt – and eating larger portions than considered healthy for their age. When approaching dietary changes, the appropriate child obesity solution is minimizing – if not eliminating altogether – those poor food choices and instead focusing on whole, natural foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.
Physical activity is just as much of a factor when it comes to child obesity. Children today are often more likely to sit in front of their computers and televisions than take part in physical activity. The child obesity solution in this case involves implementing physical activity into the child's daily lifestyle.
These lifestyle changes can go a long way towards a child obesity solution that will result in a healthier weight. Most importantly, it will increase a child's chances of having a healthier adulthood and living a long and healthy life.