The problem of childhood obesity is increasing day by day and has serious implications. There are many reasons for childhood obesity and some of the causes are as follows:
Eating too much of fatty food stuffs – Children these days eat too much of oily and junk food stuffs that lead to obesity problem.
Watching too much TV – children also lead a sedentary lifestyle and watch too much TV and sit for long before the computer. They do not take part in sports like tennis, cricket etc which leads to calories being stored up as fat.
Lack of physical exercise – children do not exercise daily. This is another root cause for obesity.
Stressful environment – children are sometimes bred in stressful environment that also leads to overweight and obesity problems among children.
While the genetic cause for obesity cannot be cured, parents and teachers can take up various steps to curb obesity resulting from the above factors. Solution for obesity depends on parents and school to a greater extent. Parents should inculcate the correct eating habits in children that will motivate them to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables and nutritive foods in the place of junk foods. Calorie charts put up in the kitchen will educate children regarding the calories being consumed per day. Parents should also help children maintain a time table and should be strict enough to see that they play out door sport at least for 1 hour everyday. They should also restrict the time their children spend before TV and computer games. Parents and school can have a positive effect by their handling methods to curb child obesity.
The school management should take effective steps to ensure that food served in the canteens is of good quality and have nutritive value. Junk and oily food stuffs should not be served in the canteens and the school authority should ensure that this is followed. A root cause of childhood obesity is the snacks and fatty food stuffs made available to students in the school canteen. Soft drinks should also not be given to children as it increases the problems of obesity. Teachers must also educate their students about the ill effects of obesity in the form of type-2 diabetes, blood pressure, higher cholesterol levels etc and the benefits of good eating habits. Teachers must supervise the children’s eating habits in school. This is where parents and teachers can play a positive role in eradication the problem of childhood obesity.
Solution of child obesity depends on parents and school as the child spends the maximum time at school when he’s away from home. Parents must be role models for their children as children imitate the eating habits of parents. If parents watch TV for too long munching a bag of chips right in front of the TV children will also follow suit and consider it the right way to eat. Parents should be responsible first do that they can guide their children in a better way. Also parents should encourage their children to be regular in their weight loss program and help them to shed weight gradually. They should encourage their child and be supportive instead of insulting or mocking at him/her. Meal times should be pleasant and there should be sufficient parent child interaction so that stress if any on the part of the child is removed. A child also gives vent to his stress through overeating so parents should maintain a cordial atmosphere at home.
Parents must encourage obese children to take part in extra curricular activities so that they do not become loners and develop depression. They must also keep a constant watch on the eating habits of obese children and encourage them to take part in the physical fitness and other programs that will enable such children to lead active lifestyle. If all these suggestions are adapted by the parents and school, childhood obesity can be reduced at least to a minimum extent and obese children will not grow up as obese adults.