Monday, October 29, 2007

Childhood Obesity Facts and Tips

by Ruff Raun

Children are facing the perils of obesity at an alarming rate with 17% of kids between the ages of 6 to 19 being overweight or obese, according to researchers.

Many parents find themselves in a dilemma where they simply don't have the time to properly monitor their childrens eating habits and they are unintentionally depriving the kids of healthy well balanced, home prepared meals.

Fast food style restaurants are more concerned with their bottom line rather than feeding the consumer with an inexpensive, healthy, low calorie tasty meal. Kids and parents keep going back for more since it fills you up, taste good and it's affordable.

Poor people are most at risk of obesity with the option of getting a quick hunger fix for only around five buckle busting dollars.

Becoming overweight or obese is a symptom of inactivity and poor eating habits and if not prevented, the child will grow up with all of the health, employment and social issues associated with obesity, so it is important that parents take steps now before the kids need to start dieting.

Parents need to set a good example for their children and apply healthy living to their own lifestyles and emphasize the importance of eating properly and making exercise and physical activity a part of their own daily lives.

Obesity wasn't an issue in past generations, if a child wasn't helping with the many chores that needed to be done, they were out on the street or on the ball field playing fun cardiovascular, stamina type sports and games, but today most children find television and computer games a way of life.

With half of American families not having a sit down meal, many kids have to make their own food decisions when they get hungry, so they are left to the mercy of what ever is in the fridge or cabinets, or have money for a five dollar meal. If there is one stay at home parent, then providing consistent balanced healthy food and physical activity is essential.

Schools have finally jumped on the nutritional bandwagon and have added more balanced food products while reducing or elliminating many of the high fat and cholesterol foods, according to a 2006 study by School Health Policies and Programs Study (SHPPS). Parents can rest a little easier knowing that the school system is making great strides in educating and offering healthier foods.

The foods parents provide at home can echo what the schools are offering with more fruits and vegetables, more whole grain products and less high fat foods and soda pop. Also, only 18.8% of schools offer deep-fried potatoes, down dramatically from 40.0% in 2000.

Some Tips: Parents need to try and prepare more healthy food for the kids and themselves, such as cold whole grain cereals or hot oatmeal to start the day and fill up on more large low calorie salads for example and fruit for dessert. Prepare meals for the week on the weekend so when the kids reach for something to eat it will be of nutritional value, and don't leave out protein...Cut way back on the five c's, candy, cookies, cakes, cola and chips, unless their made of whole grain products.

Kids are no different than adults when it comes to the biology of obesity, they need to cut more calories throughout the day than they take in. In order to maintain a healthy weight, get the kids involved in sports if possible, but if not try to get the kids in the habit of starting the day with some stretching and calisthenic type exercises, and if they can't pry themselves away frome the tube or computer, make them do ten minutes of chores or some exercises for ten minutes for every hour they sit.

It is the responsibility of the parents and school administrators to guide the kids towards healthy choices and enlighten them to the benefits of exercise and avoiding bad food choices so they can avoid being victims of obesity related diseases that include diabetes, heart disease, cancer and premature death.

Research: One study found that 25% of obese adults were overweight as children and if being overweight begins before the age of 8 years, obesity in adulthood is likely to be more severe. Source: Centers For Disease Control (CDC)

Another study concluded that if a women was overweight before she became pregnant, her child was nearly three times more likely to be overweight by age 7 compared to a child whose mother was not overweight or obese. Source: National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The simple equation for healthy living still applies to everyone; Expel more calories than you consume and eat the proper foods to maintain optimal health.

http://www.6topsystems.com

About the Author
Involved in health and fitness for over 35 years. Please visit http://www.6topsystems

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Child Obesity Causes - Childhood Obesity

by Franchis Adam

Obesity in children and teens (meaning a BMI-for-age above the 95th percentile) can occur as a result of different combinations of reasons, including environmental and genetic factors. However, it's important to realise that weight gain, whether leading to mild or severe clinical obesity, typically occurs only when a person consumes more calories than he/she expends. A large calorie surplus is typically needed to cause obesity.

There is an epidemic of childhood obesity in the United States and throughout the world. Experts estimate one in five children between the ages of 6 and 17 are overweight. Millions of these children face a higher risk much earlier in life of developing obesity-related disorders, such as diabetes and heart disease.

Studies have shown obese children have an exceptionally hard time losing weight and following through with lifestyle changes in adulthood when their health, and even their lives, may depend on them - all the more reason why parents should encourage kids to remain physically active throughout childhood.

Childhood obesity is the result of an interaction between food, state of mind, family and the environment.

An imbalance between intake and output. Intake: excessive consumption of fast foods and unhealthy food choices. Output: less time spent playing outside, more time spent on a computer, playing video games or watching TV.

The Family. The risk of becoming obese is greatest among children who have two obese parents. This may be due to powerful genetic factors, the manner in which the child is raised, parental modeling of both eating and exercise behaviors. One half of parents of elementary school children never exercise vigorously.

Low-energy Expenditure. The average American child spends several hours each day watching television; time which in previous years might have been devoted to physical pursuits. Obesity is greater among children and adolescents who frequently watch television, not only because little energy is expended while viewing but also because of simultaneous consumption of high-calorie snacks. Only about one-third of elementary children have daily physical education, and less than than one-fifth have extracurricular physical activity programs at their schools. The American Academy of Pediatrics urges parents to take walks or otherwise get physical with their children at least once a week, to make up for shrinking levels of physical education in schools.

Diet Management

Fasting or extreme caloric restriction is not advisable for children. Not only is this approach psychologically stressful, but it may adversely affect growth and the child's perception of "normal" eating. Balanced diets with moderate caloric restriction, especially reduced dietary fat, have been used successfully in treating obesity (Dietz, 1983). Nutrition education may be necessary. Diet management coupled with exercise is an effective treatment for childhood obesity (Wolf et al., 1985).

Prevention of Childhood Obesity

Parent education is one of the best ways to prevent obesity in children. Preventing obesity is far easier than treating it. Parent education should focus on promotion of breastfeeding, recognition of signals of satiety, selection of low-fat snacks, good exercise habits and monitoring of television viewing.

About the Author
Read out Weight loss. Also check out for bodybuilding diet and eyebrow threading

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Sunday, October 14, 2007

Fatty Food Now Good For Our Children's Health - It's Official

by Sam Niche

Now then. Until now, when we hear the word "FAT", we immediately think of it as very bad for us. Well, so we've been told or led to believe by the so called 'Experts'. It's bad for your heart; it blocks your arteries; and eventually leads to untimely, and in some cases excruciating death.

Only just recently that pregnant women were warned that eating or consuming fatty and sugary food could put their unborn children at risk of OBESITY in their later years.

With all these cautions in mind and undigested, now comes the big bombshell. "It is now actually okay, it's more than okay. It is now vitally important we include some sort of fat in our children's daily rations.

According to these latest findings, scientists believe youngsters burn more body fat and more quickly than adults do and this fat has an important role to play in the process of helping them grow, showed the latest study.

You see, up till now, all or most parents were told to completely cut off fatty and sugary food from their kid's meal. Stop them from downing sodas, stop giving them candies - in form of briberies. Apparently, the US team tested ten children, aged 6 - 10. Also at the same time tested 10 adults for three days. The findings showed that the amount of fat burned by the children did not differ greatly to the one burned by the adults.

However, the test showed that the children burned more fat depending on the activities they do. That is, the children burned considerably more fat relative to the amount of energy they used. The test also showed that women and girls used fat at a higher rate than men and boys of similar age.

If this is correct, does that mean women and girls should be able to lose weight very easily? Well, you answer that. I bet you know of someone, a woman or a lady, or even a girl struggling to lose weight since forever. I know I certainly have in my family.

The scientists added, dietary fat recommendations were higher for children aged four to eighteen. Apparently 25 to 30 per cent of energy, compared with 20 to 35 per cent for adults.

So, Tam Fry, of the National Obesity Forum, said: 'I think this research is absolutely right. If the word "Diet" is written on a pack or can, it really shouldn't be given to children who have totally different energy needs for their growth, and who burn off a lot of energy just by growing.' 'Fad diets are not appropriate for children. I would say to parents that a certain amount of fat is a good thing but don't overdo it.'

There you have it from the experts again. Let me ask you this, now that you've known about this new findings, are you any clearer as to what you should feed or if fat is good or bad for your children?

As a parent myself, I think too much of everything is bad for you anyway regardless if you're a kid or not. So personally, I will only feed my children what I see fit, and that's eating healthily. Now, I use the word 'healthy' very loosely as I could define 'Health y' one way and you could define it another way. But I think parents know best - well most of us anyway.

To find out a new way people are now losing weight at the touch of a button, got: http://www.loseweightpronto.com

About the Author
I'm Sam Niche, I've never suffer from weight problem in my life. But they do say; one sees and knows better looking from afar. My WIFE suffered for years battling against weight gained as a result of having our children. At one point declared clinically Depressed. Find out what she used back then and still using now till this day at in combatting her weight problem at: http//www.loseweightpronto.com

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Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Childhood Obesity: Emotional Effects and Sedentary Lifestyles

by Gurion Blattman

Copyright (c) 2007 Gurion Blattman

The social and psychological issues of childhood obesity are perhaps even more intrusive on the child's life than the physical. Childhood is a critical time for the development of self-esteem, thus the psychological issues faced by an overweight child places even more urgency on the prevention of the problem.

Obesity is "one of the most stigmatizing and least socially acceptable conditions in childhood." (Schwimmer, Jeffrey B., MD ET AL,: Health-related quality of life of severely obese children and adolescents," The Journal of American Medicine, 2003, p. 1818). An historic study showed that normal weight children rank obese children as the least desirable friends. Obese individuals were described as lazy, dirty, dumb and deceitful. These descriptions were made by children as young as six years old (Must, Aviva, Ph.D., "Effects of obesity on morbidity in children and adolescents," Nutrition in Clinical Care, p. 9).

One study relates that the quality of life of an obese child can be directly compared to the quality of life of a child undergoing cancer treatment. They feel excluded from a variety of activities and have lower levels of self worth and self esteem. They are teased and withdraw from their peers. The physical limitations and inability to keep up with normal activities may lead to a vicious cycle of additional weight gain. Studies have also shown that obese children miss four times more school than healthy weight children, which could lead to decreased school performance (Schwimmer, p. 1814).

Depression and Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) have also been linked to childhood obesity (Mustillo, Sarah, Ph.D., "Obesity and psychiatric disorder: developmental trajectories," Pediatrics, 2003, p. 854). ODD is manifested by a pattern of uncooperative and defiant behavior toward authority that can interfere with day-to-day functioning (www.aacap.org).

The effects of obesity effects have a lasting impact on an individual's life in childhood, through adolescence and into adulthood. Obese adolescents have lower education attainment, earn less money and have higher rates of poverty. Discrimination because of obesity has been documented toward adolescents in apartment rentals, employment opportunities and college admissions (Must, p. 9). Finding success as an adult is an enormous challenge, but especially daunting when faced with the physical, emotional and discriminatory effects brought on by obesity www.healthlink.mcw.edu.

Americans in general are much too sedentary. Children should have at least thirty minutes per day of exercise outside of school time (Hu,Frank B., M.D., Ph.D., "Television watching and other sedentary behaviors in relation to risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus in women," The Journal of American Medicine, 2003, p. 1790). Television, computers, and video games consume more and more of outside playtime. Television watching is the predominant sedentary behavior in children, second only to sleeping (Kaur, Haroshena, M.D., MPH, "Duration of television watching is associated with body mass index," The Journal of Pediatrics, 2003, p. 506).

Watching television is more strongly associated with obesity than other sedentary behaviors. This is because (1) watching television reduces energy expenditure by limiting time that children spend doing physical activities, (2) watching television leads to increased energy intake because it tends to lead to snacking - especially with the inundation of junk food enticements, and (3) watching television has even less energy expenditure associated with it than other sedentary behaviors such as reading and writing. (Hu, p. 1790).

Increased time spent in front of the television can result in a net gain of 350 calories per day (combined loss of potential physical activity with snacking) that over a week would result in a 0.7 pound gain in body weight per week. (Epstein, Leonard H., Ph.D., "Effects of manipulating sedentary behavior on physical activity and food intake," The Journal of Pediatrics, 2002, 140, p. 334). These findings suggest that even in healthy, non-obese children, sedentary behavior can drastically increase caloric consumption while decreasing energy expenditure.

About the Author
Gurion Blattman is a lifelong athlete and fitness expert with over 20 years experience in the health and fitness industry. A graduate of Northeastern University, he is a Certified Professional Trainer by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Based in Darien, Connecticut, he has trained and coached men, women and children of all ages as well as professional athletes. http://www.gurionblattman.com

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