Did you know? September is National Childhood Obesity Month. According to the CDC, about 1 in 5 children in the United States is obese.
Childhood obesity is influenced by many factors, including eating and physical activity behaviors, genetics, metabolism, family and home environment, and community and social factors. For some children, obesity may be influenced by the following:
- too much time spent being inactive
- lack of sleep
- lack of places to go in the community to get physical activity
- lack of access to affordable, healthier foods
Tips for Parents:
- Provide nutritious, lower-calorie foods such as fruits and vegetables in place of foods high in added sugars and solid fats. Try serving more fruits and vegetables at meals and as snacks.
- Swap out sugary drinks and juices with water
- Help your children get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Regular physical activity can have immediate health benefits like better sleep, better academic achievement, and reduced feelings of anxiety and stress.
- Encourage healthy sleep habits. Get your child to bed at the same time each day, remove electronic devices and keep their bedroom dark and cool. Children need at least 8 hours of sleep, maybe more, depending on their age.
- Be a role model! Make sure you are eating healthy meals and snacks and get the right amount of physical activity each day.
For additional tips on how to increase physical activity and to build a healthy diet with your child, visit https://www.choosemyplate.gov/.