What Not to Do to Help Your Kids Maintain a Healthy Weight
September 9, 2019
Obesity can have a variety of negative consequences for children and adults alike. However, a child is not necessarily physically or emotionally ready to participate in a formal exercise or diet program. Ultimately, making too big a deal about a child's weight could result in a young person developing poor eating, exercise or other habits that linger into adulthood.
Don't Criticize Their Weight
Talking negatively about a child's weight reinforces the idea of being thin and beautiful is more important than being a good person. It can also create the impression that being thin equates to being healthy. Therefore, your child could try to continue cutting weight even if it could lead to organ failure or other problems. Your child does not need to be stick thin to be healthy or look good, and talking about their weight constantly will cause them to internalize this.
Don't Make Them Diet
According to Xyngular, over 90% of diets fail and the people who try them keep gaining weight. This is because people tend to focus more on restricting calories and taking other temporary steps to lose weight over a short period of time. However, by not allowing yourself to eat chocolate or drink wine every so often, you want those items even more. Therefore, once the diet is over, you may indulge in unhealthy food or drink options more than you did in the past. Ideally, children will learn to adopt healthy habits that will help to regulate their weight over time. For instance, parents can teach their children to give up a glass of soda each day in favor of water. They can also find ways to get their kids interested in hiking, biking or engaging in other activities that can keep them healthy and boost their confidence at the same time.
Don't Overwork Them
If your son or daughter wants to take part in an exercise program, make sure that it is one designed for a child's body. Ideally, they won't lift more than 20 pounds, and children under the age of 18 shouldn't try to do more than 20 repetitions of lifting in a single workout. Trying to do any more than that could result in muscle strains, broken bones or other health issues.
It is important that your children understand the importance of a healthy lifestyle. However, this means eating and drinking whatever they like in moderation in addition to engaging in physical activity each day. Over time, these habits will allow your child to naturally lose weight, gain muscle or otherwise create the physique that they want.