While obesity has been there for decades, teenage obesity is more of a recent phenomenon. The trend of teenage obesity started since the 1990’s with more and more teenagers giving preference to junk foods and video games over healthy eating and exercises.
Today, the situation has reached the levels of an epidemic, with almost nine million teens, most of them under the age of 15, being obese. If we don’t put a stop to this trend right now, the number of obese teens would increase by at least 40% within the next decade. So how could we prevent teenage obesity?
When it comes to kids’ health, parents have a key role to play. They can, if they want, teach healthy or unhealthy lifestyle habits. A child’s mind, being influential, would easily emulate the lifestyle of the parents, whether or not they are healthy.
One of the habits I inherited from my father is that of eating a can of soda just before bedtime. This is one habit I haven’t been able to get rid of in spite of several attempts. It is as though it has formed a part of my flesh and blood. This is why it is so important to teach healthy eating habits to your kids right from the start.
1. Be good to yourself: If you are following unhealthy eating habits, you are not only harming yourself but also your kids. You can never force your kids to follow a healthy lifestyle if you don’t follow it yourself. So it is high time that you get rid of your junk food eating habits and focus on eating organic foods instead.
It is time that you stop buying processed fruit juices and start making the fruit juice at home by extracting it from organic fruits. It is time that you get rid of your ‘couch-sitting’ habit and take a walk or run outside.
This is the least you could do to keep yourself healthy. Plus, when you follow healthy habits, your kids would imitate you automatically.
2. Cook meals at home: Health starts at home. Instead of eating at fast food restaurants, start cooking meals at home. With home-cooked meals, you can control the ingredients which go into cooking. For example, when you are baking cookies at home, you can, if you want, use margarine instead of butter. Likewise, when you cook vegetables at home, you can cook them with low-fat oil.
Similarly, when you cook chicken at home, you can cut off its fatty part and keep only the meat; additionally, you can slice the chicken in two halves, so that you eat one half today and keep the other half for tomorrow.
In short, with home cooked meals, you could exercise lot of flexibility and control over what goes into your mouth. In contrast, with restaurant foods, you have no option but to eat whatever you are served. Even if you order only ‘low-calorie’ foods, they would harm you as well. Think about it: you know how much calorie you need per day, but the restaurant doesn’t.
3. Monitor your teen’s health. Even after following all the above steps, if your teen kid still struggles with loss, you should immediately put him on a healthy diet plan, as well as some diet pills too. If in doubt, you may want to consult with your doctor about it.