If you are currently overweight, at a healthy weight, or at risk of becoming obese, there are always steps in which you can follow which can help you to prevent weight gain and the related health risks involved. The steps involved in obesity prevention are similar to those steps involved in losing weight, they include daily exercise, healthy diet, long-term commitment along with early childhood care prevention and prevention at home within the family.
When it comes to prevention weight gain and obesity, families, parents/guardians have a huge lasting influence on health choices and have a large influence on which direction to lead their children to a lifetime of good health. Children today live in a world which unhealthy eating is promoted all around them, which makes it harder for youth to keep away from it. Parents can provide children with the tools and experience in the household to help ignore all the unhealthy choices surrounding them and make the healthier choices. Parents should start children at a young age to keep active, even if they can’t afford to put their children in sports, there are other ways around being active such as playing outside and taking their kids to the park, which costs nothing. Parents should avoid letting their children sit in front of the TV and playing video games for long periods of time. Parent should also be sure that they make healthy meals and snacks for their children at home and for school. Parents should try to avoid high-fat, high-sugar and high-calorie foods, and try to promote foods that are good for their health, most of the time and be consistent about it.
Teaching children proper lifestyles in early childhood is critical for obesity prevention in their lives. Children develop their tastes, learning to be active, and mimicking healthy or unhealthy behaviors from what’s in front of them daily. There is approximately 75% of children who spend approx. 35 hours a week in daycare, away from their parents, so it is critical that these daycare`s are promoting good healthy eating habits and activities. They should limit junk food, sugary drinks and juices, and give children appropriate healthy foods for their age. They should offer children active play time in short bursts throughout the day and keep TV off and away from areas where nap time is. Parents should use these in their household as well so it is consistent.
Below is a small summary of recommendations for obesity prevention for early child care providers and parents/guardians.
School also play a huge role in overweight and obesity prevention. One of the main ways schools can promote health is through educating students. Nutrition and physical activity lessons can be taught and involved as a part as the school’s curriculum. In core classroom subjects on nutrition and exercise, physical education classes and after-school programs to teach skills and get students into routines to maintain healthy lifestyles through their adolescence. Schools can include healthier foods in the cafeteria and eliminate unhealthy foods, and maybe have one day through the week where they serve French fries and other unhealthy foods, to limit the options and intake the students can consume.