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Top 10 Causes of Childhood Obesity

Melissa Halas-Liang, MA, RD, CDE, founder of SuperKids Nutrition, discusses what she feels are the top 10 contributing factors of childhood obesity.

Melissa Halas-Liang

on 2 November 2012

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Transcript of Top 10 Causes of Childhood Obesity

Top 10 Causes of
Childhood Obesity 1. Consumption of too many high fat, high sugar, high sodium foods made with refined flour... 2. Consumption of sweetened beverages 3. Increased
Portion Sizes... Work, homework, television, possessions (the next electronic gadget, wardrobe changes, toys) socializing and other tasks are given a higher priority. 4. Health is not a priority in America Exercise is not viewed as necessary
to prevent disease and
promote daily good health. 5. Sedentary/Insufficient exercise. 6. Poverty -Limited access to affordable and healthy food along with knowledge deficits. http://www.superkidsnutrition.com/ ...accompanied by diets too LOW in fruits, vegetables, whole grains,and low-fat dairy and fiber. U.S. KIDS are not getting enough whole foods!

< 40% of children ages 2 to 17 meet USDA recommendations for fiber.

Only 7% of children ages 2 to 19 meet recommendations for whole grains. U.S. kids' diets:
High in calories + low in nutrients = obesity and poor health SHOCKING!
The youngest Americans are turning up with precursors of heart disease. One study demonstrated that 61% of overweight 5 to 10 year- olds already possessed at least one major risk factor for heart disease, and 26% possessed two or more factors. Calories have increased 150 to 300 calories/day in the last few decades
+ no increase in
physical activity
= overweight and obesity. Children need diets that contain more nutrients, and fewer calories with more plant-based whole foods such as fruits, vegetables,100% whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds,and herbs.

* Families need more education on what constitutes good food and how to prepare, easy, tasty nutritious meals! No amount of exercise can keep up with the calorie overload! The mean intake of sugar for all persons is around 22 teaspoons per day- that's 355 calories! Preschool children get around 23-26 teaspoons of sugar a day and that’s NOT sugar from fruit! Teens get even more sugar!
Providing non-caloric beverages to teens can help them avoid excessive weight gain! OFFER WATER ...accompanied by the perception that normal or appropriate size portions deprive their child.
“Let them have a second piece of cake, it’s a party.”

“They can eat it now, they’re a kid they’ll burn it off.”

“If they don’t have a soda or candy now they’ll end up wanting it all the time when they’re older.” Parents have a hard time saying “NO”. Sweets are often used as a bargaining tool or reward for good behavior or for finishing their vegetables.
http://tinyurl.com/y9wy7kl The portion size of reward foods is often too BIG!

Healthy rewards are associated with good health; junk food rewards are associated with overweight and obesity.

Using Healthy Rewards
http://tinyurl.com/bxetoeh Health is an after-thought until there is a serious diagnosis. Even then, medication is often turned to as the solution rather than living a life of good health.

We need to create a new “normal" -to define our role in
responsible health! You can break up your exercise into
15 + 15 + 15 + 15 minutes and still get the benefits of the recommended
60 minutes per day. People need to GET MOVING every day! Too much availability of fast food in low-income areas accompanied by
food deserts.

http://tinyurl.com/3mj4f3y 7. Lack of breastfeeding support and education Formula gifts and kits are offered at hospitals and marketed in OBGYN offices.
Breastfeeding education & support right after childbirth is limited. 8. Barriers to active play Some communities are too dangerous for children to play outside and have limited funding for after-school fitness activities, sports or facilities.

In other communities children are over-scheduled and don't have enough time for fitness. 9. Increased
screen time TV,hand held digital devices, video games, computers or in some populations too much homework, don't leave enough time for fitness. 10. Genetics Although genetics do play a role in overweight and obese children, it does not explain such a dramatic increase, whereas excess calories do. http://tinyurl.com/aysk4qk http://tinyurl.com/y53vrue http://tinyurl.com/2euahsq America's craze for sugar http://tinyurl.com/678x3j Portion Distortion
Find out how many more calories are in the foods you eat today! Melissa Halas-Liang, MA, RD, CDE http://www.facebook.com/SuperKidsNutrition For many populations, issues of employment, finances, education or even daily survival take priority. Cooking with the kids and family meal time isn't a priority!
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