How do you know if your child is overweight?
Body mass index (BMI) is a measurement that is used to determine if you or your child is a healthy or unhealthy weight. BMI is not a direct measure of body fat, but it is a good way to determine whether your weight is healthy.
For children, their weight status is determined by using an age/sex specific percentile for BMI rather that the BMI used for adults. The reason for this is because girl’s and boy’s weights vary and they do so by age as well.
Is your child Overweight or Obese?
According to “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” CDC Growth Charts are used in order to determine a childs BMI so that it is accurate by taking into consideration age and sex. This chart has a percentile system.
- Overweight (for children and adolescents ages 2-19), according to CDC, is defined as a BMI at or above the 85th percentile and lower than the 95th percentile for children of the same age and sex.
- Obesity (children/adolescents ages 2-19), according to CDC, is defined as a BMI at or above the 95th percentile for children of the same sex and age.
For more information on “CDC Growth Charts,” visit http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/cdc_charts.htm
What are the health risks that your child can face now if they are obese?
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Risks for cardiovascular disease
- Increased risk of impaired glucose tolerance, insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes
- Breathing problems (asthma, sleep apnea, etc.)
- Joint problems and issues
- Muscoskeletal discomfort
- Fatty Liver Disease
- Acid Reflux
- Social and Psychological problems
Also in one study, according to CDC, 70% of obese children had at least one cardiovascular disease risk factor, and 39% have two or more.
What are some health risks that an obese child can have later in life?
- Many obese children become obese adults
- Adult obesity has several risks and complications that are very serious and life threatening.
- Heart disease, Diabetes, and Cancer
- If a child is overweight or obese as a child, once they hit adulthood it is likely to become more severe (CDC).
How can you be a good example to your children to ensure they are healthy and do not become overweight or obese?
- By eating healthy yourself, your child is going to pick up the great habit
- Have plenty of healthy snacks and foods in your home
- Keep thing that are high in sugar and other “junk foods” out of your house
- Cook healthy and sit and eat together in order to form a bond and good eating habits
- Limit your child’s video game, t.v., computer, etc. time
- Set an example and be active together; some ideas include
- playing games (baseball, volleyball, hockey, frisbee, football, basketball, etc.) to stay active together and have fun doing so
- workout videos that can be done at home are an effective non-costly solution to keep fit
- Encourage your children to drink lots of water
- The best thing that you can do is be a role model for your child! If you are healthy, fit, active, and love your child; they will learn your habits and make them their own!
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children and adolescents need one hour or more of physical activity each day! For more information the physical excercise recommendations for children and adolescents and other ideas, visit, http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/children.html
BE YOUR CHILD’S ROLE-MODEL!
A HEALTHY FAMILY IS A HAPPY FAMILY!
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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Basics About Childhood Obesity, 2011.” Retrieved on May 19, 2011 from, www.cdc.gov