Obesity is one of the most rampant health issues that have affected a large proportion of the world’s population. The problem gets even more alarming as it is not restricted to just adults but now children have also fallen prey to it.
Obesity is defined as the condition when there is excessive or abnormal fat accumulation on a person’s body. When the body mass index (BMI) of an individual exceeds 30, he is considered to be obese. According to the World Obesity Atlas 2022, there will be more than 27 million children with obesity in 2030 in India. This includes over 12 million obese children aged between five and nine years and more than 14 million children of 10 to 19 years of age.
Obesity is linked to a number of chronic diseases and can pose a major health risk. It can lead to cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and heart diseases and other issues like diabetes. With obesity rising rapidly, especially among children, it is important to safeguard the young ones against it through adequate measures. Below are some tips for preventing child obesity.
1. Eating Healthy
Many kids these days have a poor diet which consists of sugary drinks, fried items, and other and processed foods. Binging on these snacks can have a direct impact on the health of children and cause unhealthy weight again or obesity. It is important that a child does not eat excessive calories and consumes fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, pulses, and legumes. Avoid eating processed, fatty, canned, and junk food to prevent weight gain.
Being physically active can be effective in keeping obesity and unhealthy weight gain at bay. Including exercise in the daily routine of children can help them burn the excessive calories and strengthen their bones and muscles. Indulging in physical activities such as walking, swimming or cycling also leads to good sleep which in turn helps in preventing obesity in children and adults too.
3. Good sleep schedule
A good sleep is the key to a healthy lifestyle. Sleeping well can help prevent a range of health problems like 2 diabetes, obesity, and behavioural issues. When child is sleep deprived or is not taking enough sleep, he is likely to be at a greater risk of gaining unhealthy weight.
4. Reducing Screen Time
Spending too much time staring at bright mobile screens affects the sleeping habits of children. This, in turn, can lead to issues like weight gain, poor academic performance, and poor mental health. Reducing screen time can also make children spend more time in doing family activities and can help tackle the temptation to eat unhealthy food. Cutting down on screen time by switching off devices early also leads to better sleep in children.
Keywords: obesity, childhood obesity, how to prevent obesity, tips to prevent obesity