A chubby child might look cute and huggable, but the reality is that childhood obesity can cause a lot of health problems in the future.
In the Philippines, overweight or obese children are usually thought of as healthy, or "malusog." Some parents even want their kids to be chubby since they look so cute and huggable.
But in reality, child obesity is an actual problem and being obese at such a young age can cause a lot of problems later on in the child's life. That's why it's important for parents to know what factors cause child obesity, and avoid those.
1. Eating too much sweets
Kids love sweets, and having a sweet tooth can sometimes become a problem especially since sugar can quickly cause kids to gain weight. Candies, chocolates, and softdrinks are common culprits. Avoid giving your child sweets or softdrinks as much as possible, and instead opt for fruits and fruit juice.
2. Eating unhealthy food
As much as possible, it's important to feed your child fresh and healthy food instead of unhealthy food such as instant noodles or other processed food. Vegetables, fruits, fish, milk, and other fresh and delicious food should be a part of your child's diet.
3. Eating too much
Even if you give your child healthy food, it'll be hard for them to not gain weight if they eat a lot. Make sure to give your child a serving that's appropriate for their size and their age.
4. Family history
Sometimes, family history and genetics can also play a role in a child becoming overweight or obese. In cases like these, it's important for parents to do their best to control their child's weight.
5. Psychological factors
Sometimes, anxiety and depression can cause children to overeat, which can then cause them to become obese as a result. If you think that your child's health is being affected by a psychological issue, don't hesitate to look for help.
6. Lack of exercise
Exercise is important since it keeps your child strong, healthy, and also helps with their physical development. A lack of exercise can not only cause obesity but it can also hamper your child's development and growth.
Lastly, having an unhealthy lifestyle in your family can directly impact your little one's health. Try and set an example for your child by eating healthy, exercising, and encouraging your kids to live a healthy lifestyle.
What are the risks of childhood obesity?
Childhood obesity poses a lot of risks for children since they will be more prone to diabetes, heart disease, asthma, sleep disorders, and joint pain.
A lot of parents think that kids "outgrow" being obese, and while it can happen that an obese child would grow up with a normal weight, in some cases kids can bring with them their unhealthy habits well into adulthood.
That's why it's important for parents to always focus on their kid's health and to make sure that their kids are fit and healthy.