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Childhood Obesity Essay Sample

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Childhood Obesity Essay Sample

Are you supersizing your children? So many parents are feeding their children too much. Our children need to have examples set for them on how to eat healthy. Children also need to be taught how to incorporate more physical activities in their daily routines. Children will have major health risks if their eating habits are not changed. Parent should watch what their children eat because childhood obesity is becoming an epidemic.

Childhood obesity has increased dramatically over the years. The United States is one of the highest ranked countries with obese children. A direct cause of obesity in children is the parents. Eating unhealthy food, consuming soft drinks, and supersizing or giving too large of portions of food teach children this is what they are suppose to be eating, when in fact all of these factors contribute to their obesity. Many parents for decades have served large portions and expected children to eat all of the food the child (children) had on their plates. Instead of forcing children to eat all of their food, children should be taught to eat moderate portions and when feeling full the parent should not force them to eat more.

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Children are becoming obese at early ages, parents need to stop supersizing their children before it’s too late. Throughout the United States, many parents do not see their children being overweight or obese. In several research studies, parents did not think their children were anything near being obese. Parents are in denial and do not take much action to correct the issue. The ways parents feel differ throughout the regions. There were only 13 percent of parent who took heed to their children’s obesity compared to parents in the Northeast regions who had the highest rate of 37 percent. The pie chart below illustrates the different regions and the percentage of concerned parents. These numbers need to increase; more parents need to be more concerned about their children’s weight and well being. A change needs to be made for the children’s sake.

[pic]Only 13% of parents in the Midwest region are concerned about their children’s obesity, 29% in the South, 31% in the West, and 37% in the Northeast. This number should increase dramatically; more parents need to care about their children’s weight and health.

Parents with obese and overweight children know there is a possibility their children may stay obese when they become adults, but a lot of parents believe their children will grow out if it. Parents want to be comforting to their children, but giving your children food and overfeeding them is not a comfort when later in life can cause harm to your child. What parents think is helping their children is in turn hindering them. Parents put their children at risk of having health complications each time food is shoved in front of them as a reward or comfort. Making children eat more than they are suppose is teaching them eating large meals are ok, is that what we want to teach our children?

In the article, are parent’s perceptions of their child’s weight accurate, there was a study done to determine if parents of obese children realized their children’s obesity would lead to health issues later in life? Advice was given to parents on how to intervene and get their children back on track so that they may live a healthier lifestyle. It was stated that many parents perception of their child’s weight was nothing close to their child’s actual weight. The statistics show how out of touch parents are with how mandatory it is to feed children healthy foods and stop overfeeding and supersizing the food the children have been fed.

Children are dependent on their parents for providing their nutrional needs. This goes to the extent of when children are fed, how much they are fed, and the times of day they are fed. In preventing children from becoming obese all of these precautions need to be followed on a daily basis. Parents need to set an example for their children. There have been many studies done on a variety of families to see if the type of household you live in makes a difference. For example, single parents versus a two parent family fed their children more each day, but all the study showed was that it did not matter and it was shown that all parents were overfeeding their children.

Why would parents want their children to prone to having health complications? Do you want your child to outlive you? Many parents do not think there is nothing wrong with supersizing their children, in fact a lot think eating more food should be encouraged. Our children do not have a say so in what they eat because it is being prepared for them, with that being said they can not control any health issues they may encounter. Developing health risks are higher in children who are overweight and obese. Parents need to pay more attention to the harm they are causing their children.

Supersizing meals and not choosing healthy alternatives will kill our children. Obese children are faced with short and long term health risks if their eating habits are not changed. Childhood diseases from obesity are on the rise. Children who are obese suffer from diabetes, asthma, sleep apnea, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, fatty liver disease (which many assume comes only from alcohol, but can come from obesity), and cancer. All of these conditions are what parents are putting before their children when supersizing meals. Depression and other psychological disorders also occur more in children who are overweight and obese.

Parents need to be held accountable for their children’s weight. Children will have to grow up fast and deal with adult issues when they do not have to, but because parents are not standing up and making a change the epidemic will rise. Children have to eat, but they do not have to eat just anything. Parents are the decision makers, but the decisions being made are not in the best interest of the children if our children are becoming obese and dying from obesity related diseases. Can our parents take a stand and change their household’s eating habits before it is too late?

Obese children need more physical activity. In fact, all children need more physical activity to promote living healthier lives and staying that way throughout their adulthood. Inactivity in children is on the rise and responsible parents need to step up and help their children live healthier. Parents who are always on the go make their children suffer because they do not get any extra physical activity outside of school recess to burn the extra energy or weight. Children who live a more physically active life are not obese and will not be obese if that continues.

Sinclair, Stellino, and Partridge say: “Recess should not be viewed as a reward, or taken always as a punishment, but rather as an essential educational support component for all children.” Recess at many schools is a privilege, but should become a necessity. Parents need to set up a working plan with their children’s school officials to make recess a beneficial daily activity. Parents also need to become active with their children and enforce daily activities to strive to make obese children become physically fit.

Recess is a time where children can go out and play, but also can participate in activities to help them become healthy. Recess is sometimes taken away from children because of behavior or lack of time, but recess can be a time where children can overcome the obesity epidemic.

[pic] A little physical activity will go a long way. Having your child exercise as much as 30 minutes to as little as 5 minutes a day will help them stay active and start living a healthy life. Many elementary schools are implementing RAW’s, which is recess activity of the week. This adds variety to the children’s activities in school and allows them to burn calories and have fun at the same time. These programs are to promote wanting children’s bodies to be healthy and having the children learn at an early age to be physically active. This form of recess is an added benefit to children and not only is t used at recess, but in physical education (P.E.) classes as well.

The activities that are implemented in the RAW are usually activities that are not something that would be done on a day to day basis. These exercises break the children away from their normal routine and make the activities exciting so that they want to participate and continue doing these activities at home. Some examples of a typical RAW are obstacle courses, students may go through the course as they choose, but each time go faster and faster to enhance the impact and calories being burned. Another example would be playing Frisbee; even though this is a simple game encouraging students to change the pace of the game could be interesting. For instance, having the children speeding up their time in which it takes them to get the Frisbee. Parents and teachers can come together to make sure the children will become successful at losing the excess weight, but the ultimate idea is for them to stick with the plans set out for them to decrease obesity among them.

In conclusion, although children will have health risks if their eating habits are not changed, parents should watch what their children eat for two reasons. First, children are not getting enough physical activity, but most importantly childhood obesity is becoming an epidemic. Parents need to commit themselves today and stop childhood obesity. McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Burger King should not be your children’s favorite places to eat. Give children a variety of healthy foods. As parents these are things that we should already have been enforcing and should not have to be reminded to do from time to time. If you do not care for your children properly and giving them the proper foods that are needed to ensure they maintain being healthy who will? Stop supersizing your children and give them a chance to live. Do your children a favor and help those live healthier and safer lives.

References

Kaufman,R. “Television Is Responsible for the Obesity Epidemic.” Opposing Viewpoints: Television. Ed. Jamuna Carroll. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 2006. Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Gale. Apollo Library. 7 Sep. 2008 .

Slusser,W. (2008). Family Physicians and the Childhood Obesity Epidemic. American Family Physician, 78(1), 34, 37. Retrieved September 7, 2008, from Research Library database. (Document ID: 1509643281).

Schmidt, H (2008). Childhood Obesity and Parental Responsibilities. The Hastings Center Report, 38(4), 3. Retrieved September 8, 2008, from
Research Library database. (Document ID: 1529873541).

Walling, A (2008). Are Parents’ Perceptions of Their Child’s Weight Accurate? American Family Physician, 77(12), 1746. Retrieved September 8, 2008, from Research Library database. (Document ID: 1494486951).

Parents’ Denial over Childhood Obesity. (2008). Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, 79(5), 3,6. Retrieved September 8, 2008, from Research Library database. (Document ID: 1493729071).

Sinclair, A Megan Babkes Stellino, Julie A Partridge. (2008). Recess Activities of the Week (RAW): Promoting Free Time Physical Activity to Combat Childhood Obesity. Strategies, 21(5), 21-24. Retrieved September 8, 2008, from ProQuest Education Journals database. (Document ID: 1473843421).

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