How Can You Help in Reducing Obesity in Small Children
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How Can You Help in Reducing Obesity in Small Children

Obesity in small children is a concern these days. Along with various physical complications due to the increased body weight, obese children also suffer from many emotional issues. While a medication program is necessary for obesity caused due to genetic disorders or other health concerns in the family history, mental support and guidance to go through the treatment process, along with a supportive diet system, have to be in place to help in reducing obesity in children.

Obesity has been observed as a common issue in growing children these days and therefore reducing obesity has become a major challenge. In many developed countries, including the United States, the symptoms of obesity have become quite prevalent. There are many views on estimating whether a child is obese. While experts depend on the BMI guidelines to diagnose the rate of obesity in small children, some people believe that an average 20-25% increase in the normal body weight in a child can be a condition of obesity. However, for a better diagnosis and the necessary steps to reduce obesity in children, it is recommended that you take advice from the child’s doctor.

Understanding obesity in small children – A quick overview

As per various researches, there can be many reasons to why children fall a victim of obesity, and following were found to be the most common causes of obesity:

  • Unhealthy or poor eating habits
  • Overeating
  • Reduced physical activities
  • Genetic disorders
  • Obesity in the family
  • Depression and other emotional pressure
  • Neurological and other endocrine problems
  • Improper medication

Obesity in itself can invite many other diseases especially in children, including diabetes, heart diseases, problems related to respiratory system, high levels of blood pressure, and sleeplessness. In addition, obesity in children may also draw many more emotional complications including low self-esteem and high levels of depression and anxiety.

Your primary responsibilities

Prior to mentioning about the necessary medication and ways to lose extra weight in obese children, it is highly essential to keep in mind that a child with obesity needs emotional and moral support from his or her family members, parents, and peers.

If you are a parent of an overweight obese child, you must ensure to make your child overcome the feeling of depression and low self-esteem. While you talk to your overweight child especially about his or her weight and related health concerns, you should also express your love and affection to help the child realize of your support and care.

In addition, make your child feel comfortable to talk to you about the problems he or she is facing due to overweight. This helps you understand his or her emotional condition and equally guides you in what way you can be supportive.

Never make your child feel left out just because he or she is overweight. Treat him or her as you would do to a normal child so that he or she develops the self-confidence to face the challenges of the ongoing phase and accepts to face the various treatment procedures and its challenges.

How can you help your obese child?

  1. See your child’s doctor, first.
    • As mentioned earlier, there can be a physical cause, such as genetic disorder or obesity within the family members, related to your child’s obesity. In such cases, a proper diagnosis by an expert doctor to put your child into an effective medication program is the most likely approach.
    • If your child has gained weight due to other common factors, such as over eating or lack of physical exercises, check with the doctor for a better health plan, including the required eating habits and necessary exercises to perform.
  2. Support your child to perform certain effective physical exercises regularly. Regular physical activity is one of the important keys to reducing the symptoms of overweight. In most cases, children may also suffer from obesity due to total lack of physical exercises.
    • In such cases, you should limit the number of hours your child watches television, or sits in front of a computer screen. Rather plan for a regular exercise or physical workout that your child can begin with and in due course of time follow the principles of exercise strictly. This would help your child to burn the unnecessary calories and lose some part of the body weight over time.
    • Do not forcefully impose your child to perform any activity that he or she is not comfortable doing.
    • Allow your child to do some powerful exercises or physical activities at least for 20-30 minutes. However, do not force this to happen again on day 1. Understand what workouts he or she can do initially and put some physical labor in practice and continue. An effective workout is when your child experiences raise in the heartbeat and sweats moderately. Keep a watch if your obese child is feeling exhausted or restless. Therefore, a proper monitoring of your child’s physical activities can help in such cases.
    • You should also encourage your obese child to take part in various sport activities organized in his or her school.
    • Small children learn easily by seeing what others do, especially their parents. So, it is also essential that you are involved into some physical exercise to motivate your child to join you.
  3. Reconsider your obese child’s diet because a healthy diet program is equally essential for reducing obesity. However, be patient, since it may not be possible to change the entire diet of your child in one day.
    • First, educate your child about various nutritional requirements to overcome obesity. Take advice from the doctor to suggest a diet plan, if necessary.
    • Allow your child to have all types of healthy diet one at a time, to change his or her eating habits slowly. Avoid giving junk food; instead allow him or her to food that can build the body energy levels. Some planned snacks or sweets may be good if you child can have in moderate quantities to begin with adhering to the diet plan.
    • It is also essential to change your buying habits to support your overweight child. Purchase fruits and vegetables, as well as whole grains, taking your child along with you to the market to aid to his or her education on the essential food types to prefer in case of obesity.
    • Allow your child to have non-dairy food products everyday and try to avoid giving fried foods. Include fruits, green vegetables, nuts, or pumpkin seeds in his or her regular meal that makes your child feel filling while providing the necessary health nutrients.
    • If your kid is non-vegetarian, you may also include lean meat, fish, or eggs in his or her meal, but in moderate quantities.
    • Do not reward or pamper your child with a calorie-filled dessert or candy for finishing a meal. While many parents feel content doing so, it is one of the basic reasons for obese children not showing improvements despite following a proper weight-loss diet plan.
    • Let your child have food only when he or she feels hungry. It is also important not to force the child to finish a lunch or dinner.
  4. Join an effective support group.One of the most effective ways of reducing your child’s obesity would be to join a support group in your locality that deals with providing guidance and boosting moral confidence.
    • A well-organized support group can help your child to build inner confidence to fight against obesity. The principles of such support groups are basically focused on providing moral support to parents and their overweight children.
    • Support groups can take due steps to make overweight children feel that they are no different from other normally growing children around them and can equally lead a healthy life if they follow the guiding principles to fight against obesity.

Obesity in small children can be a life-long problem if the situation is not controlled far earlier. With proper guidance and emotional support, obese children can bring drastic changes to their weight and overcome the physical and mental trauma easily. Parents, family members, and peers should always be cooperative towards obese children to provide them the necessary support and help them in every possible way to lose their weight and maintain a healthy life.

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