Kids Fit...Not Fat
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) says about 55 percent of adults
are overweight or obese, up from 43 percent in 1960. Much
of this can be attributed to
poor habits in their youth. The Surgeon General's Report on
Physical Activity and Health found that school-based programs are
successful in increasing physical activity levels and emphasizing
the substantial benefits of regular moderate exercise. Yet, by the
time children reach high school, only 19 percent of them are considered
physically active. Many adults feel miserable about their weight.
In most cases their struggles with food began in childhood. In the
past 20 years, obesity among 6 to 11 year-old children has increased
are playing less and getting less exercise because of technology.
As parents, we need to teach our children about having balance in
our lives, exercise, fitness, and good eating habits. We need
to set a good example and train our children for life. Kids
shouldn't wait till they grow up to start exercising and eating right.
Here are some
tips to help your kids stay active apart from rewiring your TV and
- Set a good
example. If you aren't active, why should your kids be?
- Instead of
taking the car to the store, walk or ride bikes with your kids.
- Instead of
having the weekly family outing to the movies, go to the park
- Have birthday
parties at parks, water parks, the Discovery Zone, skating rinks,
and other active places where your kids can run, jump, and play.
- Do things
with your kids that are fun for both of you. Go swimming,
hiking, ride bikes, jump rope, tag, kickball, catch, etc.
can help your kids grow into fit and healthy adults by reducing
their risk of a wide range of health problems such as heart disease,
cancer, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. And, in addition
to keeping your child physically healthy, staying fit can also boost
their self-esteem, according to the American Dietetic Association
(ADA). So help your kids get excited about exercise while they're
young. Exercising can become a habit that will provide them with
a lifetime of benefits.
activity is proven to improve quality of life for children and is
important in decreasing the risk of obesity, heart disease, depression
and a myriad of other health problems throughout their lives. Some
experts say that if one in five inactive individuals in North America
became active, more than $100 billion in health care and related
costs could be avoided.
the physical activity level of children and youth and providing
visionary leadership, resource support and effective programs is
critical for the future of our children. The time is now to address
decreasing activity levels and the resulting health implications
in youth today.