Recent study shows that about 37% of Houston’s school aged children are overweight or obese. Problems stemming from being severely overweight relates to:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Low Self Esteem
- Polycystic Ovarian Disease
- Hip and Knee problems
- Fatty Liver
- Sleep Apnea- When children suddenly stop breathing during sleep
- Elevated Triglycerides and Cholesterol
Here are some helpful tips:
- Desire and motivation to lose weight by pointing out how this would benefit him/her.
- Praise and reward, but NO FOOD REWARDS
- AVOID: FAST FOOD AND SODAS
- Limit their screen time to less than 1 hour a day (TOTAL).
- Do not let your child go hungry. Achieve this with a high protein diet, including eggs, chicken, fish, cheese, and milk. Allow some oils such as salad dressing in their diet, and by markedly decreasing “white foods” (bread, chips, potatoes, french fries, cereals, pasta, tortillas, rice, cookies, and pancakes/waffles).
- It’s important to know that while whole wheat bread and pasta are more nutritious, the carbs are similar.
- Encourage your child to eat fun colored fruits and veggies such as tomatoes, carrots, celery, and yellow peppers, and give (non-food) rewards for high numbers of these.
- Have “Healthy Snacks” such as cheeses, celery with salad dressing dip, or fruits such as apples, grapes, oranges, etc.
- Oils in the diet are important for your growing child’s brain development and on his/her growth. When oils are decreased in foods, this is replaced with carbohydrates and sugars which are often more harmful. I therefore, do not recommend low-fat or fat free foods.
- Encourage 1-2 hours daily of fun activities which will keep your child active, such as dancing, gymnastics, sports, swimming, and family activities such as biking or walking.