As America’s children get fatter, the country’s obesity crisis grows all the more rapidly. In fact, as of 2010, a survey reported that nearly one third of all children in the U.S. were overweight.
When discussing child obesity, it is especially important to not keep the focus on aesthetics. We must teach our children that they are valuable at every size, regardless of what popular media tells them.
Rather, the real issue with obesity is the health risks caused by obesity. When children and adults are overweight or obese, they become at risk for life threatening chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease.
In addition to health risks, overweight children are susceptible to low self esteem. This, unfortunately, is largely due to Western society equating thinness with desire, and the negative stigmatization of fatness as an inherently shameful thing.
As parents, there are a number of things you can do to ensure that you child lives both a happy and healthy lifestyle, regardless of weight. Combating child obesity is a process that requires patience, acceptance, and a great deal of love.
It also helps to look at the facts.
On average, children should have at least one hour of physical activity per day. Unfortunately, research suggests that most children aren’t getting enough activity; in fact, approximately 75% of children don’t get the daily recommended amount of exercise.By introducing physical activity into your child’s life, the likelihood of obesity will drastically increase.
An excellent physical activity to get your child involved in is gymnastic lessons. Gymnastics is fun, challenging, and an excellent way for children to get involved in athletics. According to research, the health benefits of gymnastics are great; gymnastic lessons enable children to gain lean and toned muscle, and helps develop a child’s balance and posture.
Another important benefit of gymnastics clubs is the ways in which it helps to build children’s self esteem. According to another study, children between the ages of 10 and 16 that participate in sports like gymnastic and tumbling classes are reported to have higher levels of confidence and self-efficacy.
Building a happier, confident, future for your child starts with investing in their health.