For every parent, their child’s obesity is an ever present distress that can not only earn the children mean nicknames but more importantly invite a host of health concerns. Parents need to be paying close attention to the food habits and general lifestyle of their little ones in order to keep a check on their overall health.
Treatment for Child Obesity
Treatment for childhood obesity is based on your child’s age and if he or she has other medical conditions. Treatment usually includes changes in your child’s diet and level of physical activity. In certain extreme circumstances, treatment may include medications or weight-loss surgery.
The methods for maintaining your child’s current weight or losing weight are the same: Your child needs to eat a healthy diet — both in terms of type and amount of food — and increase his or her physical activity. Success depends largely on your commitment as a parent to helping your child make these changes.
It is the parents who are responsible for buying the vegetables, grocery, and also cooking the meals and deciding on where and how the meals are eaten. All these impact the child’s health and eating habits. As a parent you need to keep in mind these easy 11 home remedies to fight obesity in children.
Must Know Home Remedies to Fight Obesity in Children
1. Avoid Convenience Foods when buying grocery: High processed convenience foods such as cookies, crackers and ready to eat meals should be avoided and instead choose healthy snack options such as vegetables, fruits, sprouts and raw foods.
2. Limit Artificially Sweetened Beverages: Artificially sweetened beverages and aerated drinks including those that contain added fruit juices provide little or no nutritional value in exchange for their high calories. These beverages also have a tendency to make your child too full and thereby not eat proper meals and healthier foods.
3. Inclusion of Honey in your child’s diet: Studies have shown that consumption of honey along with water on a regular basis helps in burning fat and excess calories. Making a habit of taking honey before sleeping for your little ones can be seen to give effective results.
4. Make Fun Workout Sessions: Make your child’s workout sessions interesting and fun so that they participate willingly and wholeheartedly and make the sessions less monotonous. Setting up music while they exercise or taking them outside to parks to play with other children their age can make them more interested in the workout sessions and get them to become more interested in taking part in physical activities.
5. Keep the Children Properly Hydrated: Adequate amount of water in your child’s body will cut down the appetite for junk food and can lead to faster weight loss. The point is to keep your child hydrated and it can be achieved through tangy homemade drinks with lemon, orange or strawberry without sugar and even homemade fruit juices. Keep your refrigerator well stocked with natural hydrating fluids and remove aerated and artificially sweetened drinks to encourage your child to develop proper and healthy drinking habits. Parents can also lead by example by choosing natural drinks
6. Limit Fast Food: Fast food menu options are often high in fat and calories and are served in higher portions than required by children. Therefore when planning on eating out parents can make the effort to plan a picnic with healthy food options instead of taking the children out for a quick fast food experience. This way the children will also form strong familial bonds and their intake of fast food will be limited.
Read More: 15 Foods to Avoid in Your Baby’s Diet
7. Sit Down Together as a Family for Meals: It is very important for the child to understand the importance of meals as a family event where all the family members must interact and talk about their day. This can be made into an event where the family members share stories and news from their days. Parents should discourage meals taken in front of the television or computers and while playing video games. Television, computers, mobile phones, computer games tend to lead to fast eating and less attention to what is being eaten.
8. Limit TV and recreational computer time to no more than 2 hours a day. A good way to increase your child’s activity levels is to limit the number of hours he or she is allowed to watch TV each day. Other sedentary activities — playing video and computer games or talking on the phone — also should be limited.
9. Emphasize activity, not exercise. Children should be moderately to vigorously active for at least an hour a day. Your child’s activity doesn’t have to be a structured exercise program — the object is just to get him or her moving. Free-play activities — such as playing hide-and-seek, tag or jump-rope — can be great for burning calories and improving fitness.
Read More: 22 Best Summer Sports for Kids
10. Find activities your child likes to do. For instance, if your child is artistically inclined, go on a nature hike to collect leaves and rocks that your child can use to make a collage. If your child likes to climb, head for the nearest neighborhood jungle gym or climbing wall. If your child likes to read, then walk or bike to the neighborhood library for a book. Parents’ active involvement in the process makes all the difference for the child.
11. Don’t Threaten or Compare: Never threaten or taunt your child about their obesity. This can lead to more stress in the child’s mind which in turn might lead to rapid weight gain. Also do not pressurize your child to lose weight. This may negatively and dangerously affect the health of your child. Emphasis should be laid on being active and avoiding binge eating junk and sugary foods instead of losing weight and strenuous exercise.
Most important thing that parents today have to keep in mind is that they have to be actively involved in their child’s life and be making the correct choices for them in their formative years to inculcate healthy eating habits later on in life. Devoting time to your child and his or her needs instead of punishing them for breaking eating rules once in a while is the key to avoiding child obesity as the child learns to trust the parent and does not feel the need to hide and eat junk food. Instead of following strict diets and deliberately incorporating food items that your children do not like try and maintain a more moderate diet chart which can be flexible enough to include fun alternatives to processed and ready to eat food items such as cookies, cakes etc.