The child is rounded, but you say to yourself that now he or she is growing and it’s normal to have some fat here and there (you were also a child once and your mom and grandma have told you that the child should eat to grow up). You are more concerned if the child refuses to eat any food and you try to make him or her sit on the table because you are still referring to your childhood memories when you have been told that anyone who has not eaten everything in the plate will get sick.
Unfortunately, the memories of your childhood mislead you and if your child is plump, then he or she is most likely overweight which you refuse to accept.
Why is it so important to take measures against the overweight of the child?
Overweight in childhood can have very serious physical and psychological problems. In children with overweight, there is an increased risk of developing diseases such as diabetes, liver and gallbladder problems, hypertension, infertility, coronary heart problems, atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, even congestive heart failure (a disease characteristic of the elderly ).
Add low self-esteem and low self-evaluation (because of the mockery of their classmates), which most often leads to isolation, stress, depression and learning problems, and you will answer the question why you should not bypass the child’s overweight problems.
How do you know if your child has a problem with weight?
Observe him or her! If your child is gaining weight after one month, then he or she probably has a problem and you need to take the necessary measures. Overweight is a chronic disease characterized by excessive accumulation of fat deposits. You can easily find out if your child really has a weight problem by visiting a specialist who can measure the child’s body weight index.
The Body Mass Index (BMI) is calculated by dividing the body weight (kilograms) of the height (in meters) and raise to the second power. Since children are teenagers, this is also taken into account when calculating BMI.
How to tackle this problem?
First and foremost, find out what the cause that led to obesity is. It would be best to seek competent medical help or trust a weight loss clinic where they will do all the necessary analysis and will not only help the kid tackle weight but also give you guidance on how to then take care of his or her healthy weight loss.
Causes of Obesity
The main causes of overweight in children can be very complex, but most often obesity is the result of poor eating habits (eating harmful food), sedentary lifestyle, lack of diet, lack of different groups of vitamins, stress.
All specialists, whether they are nutritionists or specialists from a weight loss clinic, point out poor nutrition as one of the main culprits for childhood obesity.
Ask yourself what your child is eating and if you answer: mainly fast food, pastries, fatty snacks, crisps, snacks, cakes, biscuits, various treats such as wafers, salty crackers, cream desserts, this means that your child is mainly eating harmful food.
Here again you have to consider whether you have established some kind of a diet at home. If your child eats whenever he or she wants, no matter at what time, if he or she eats crisps, hamburgers, chips or pizzas in front of the TV or computer, if he or she often opens the fridge for a piece of cake or a glass of carbonated drink at night, then you have a diet problem.
If you do not have an established diet at home, it is probably the second culprit for the child’s obesity.
Sedentary way of life
The lack of sufficient movement contributes to overweight accumulation, and unfortunately today’s children are staying too long in front of the laptop and video games.
Lack of important vitamins in the diet
Again, we go back to the harmful foods and the lack of useful vitamins and minerals in them. If your child is mainly eating fast, fat and unhealthy foods, there is an inevitable lack of vitamin and minerals important for his or her metabolism.
Problems at school, in the family or in the ambient
We usually think that only adults suffer stressful situations, but that is not the case. Overweight in adolescents may also be a symptom that the child is stressed / abused, offended, subjected to humiliation in some way. So do not overlook this factor, but take time and pay attention to when your child is overeating, and if you have doubts that obesity is due to a problem in the family or at school which he or she does not share, look for a children’s psychologist.
* talk to the child
Conduct conversations very carefully as children have a fragile psyche, and if you are not delicate, you can get the opposite effect. In other words, instead of making a child want to change their diet to take care of their weight and health, you can depress them and, as a result, start to “overfeed” because they are stressed or depressed.
* encourage his or her efforts
Be there whenever he or she needs you. Children are hardly constrained, but you will be patient and explain that nothing is achieved without some effort. Do not use a mentor tone but talk friendly. The child will feel even closer to you and will understand that healthy weight loss is the best solution for his health and appearance.
* build a diet together
The participation of the whole family is of great importance, so try to sit all together at the table by observing certain hours of eating. Eat slowly and turn off the TV (do not look at Facebook) during meals. This way, your child will become accustomed to not eating while watching TV or in front of the computer. (You know that when you eat while you’re working, watching TV, playing games, or surfing the web, it takes a lot more food than needed).
* Choose the food together
During shopping, explain to the child why instead of biscuits and wafers you are buying fruits and vegetables; why not buy juice or carbonated drink, but make home-made juice; why the bread in your basket is not white but whole grain. This makes it easier for a child to understand the difference between beneficial and harmful foods and is used to keep a healthy diet.
* never use food as encouragement or punishment
One of the biggest mistakes is to use food as a reward that the child has done something or as a punishment if he has done something unacceptable.
* Do not use the word “diet” when talking to the child about losing weight
According to nutritionists, this word causes negative reactions in children, while the term healthy weight loss makes them want to lose weight themselves and move much faster and easier to a healthy diet.
* Try not to leave your child for a long time at home in front of the computer or the TV
Here, however, there is something very important: do not force him or her to do sports. Sometimes, in the desire to help their children, parents sign them up for sports that children do not like and do not want to do. There is no point in forcing a child if he or she does not want to practice football, swimming or volleyball. If the child does not want to do sports, simply change your regimen, go out together for a walk in the park, ride a bicycle, do not use lifts, go hiking in the mountain.
* tell him or her why it is good to eat in healthy manner and why it is helpful for him or her to lose weight
Talk about health, about the diseases that overweight causes without scaring the child. Children are not stupid, and if you treat them as grown-ups and explain to them in a simple way, they will understand you perfectly.
What should you do if you cannot do it on your own?
Both obesity and weight loss occur in the same way both in children and in adults. The difference is that if an overweight child does not take timely measures, the plump child of today will become an adult with many illnesses and even greater weight problems tomorrow.
Sometimes, despite the great desire of parents to help their children to lose weight in a healthy way, this is beyond their powers. (Children can be very stubborn and do the opposite of what their parents explain, and this is… “just because”).
If you are also trying everything but the effect is zero, we advise you to go to a nutritionist or trust a weight loss clinic where your child will be under the care of healthy weight loss professionals.
Weight loss clinics are a really good solution because the child will not only lose weight, but will also build a healthy diet (which can also benefit you) and will look in another way at both his or her nutrition and health.
Is the problem of children obesity completely solvable?
Of course, it is solvable, but only if measures are taken immediately for a healthy weight loss. Otherwise, you risk your child getting into the statistics, according to which 70% of overweight children at 10-11 years of age who have not taken healthy weight loss will continue to be overweight after reaching the age of 20.
Therefore, if your child has an obesity problem, do not wait but rather immediately take steps and visit a dietitian or a weight loss clinic.