Staring into the face of childhood obesity
July 27, 2010
You stare at your kids every day. You admire them. You love them. You’d die for them. Would you fight obesity for them? We see it every day, everywhere we look. It’s unavoidable. And yet most of us don’t recognize it in our own children. At least that’s what one study of parents of preschool-age children shows us.
We all know it’s a problem, but it’s just not “our” problem. Our kids are healthy. Our kids might look a little “chubby”, but hey, they’re still growing. After all, they’re only 3 and 5 years old, they’ll grow into their bodies. Our kids look like we do; it’s just genetics. Unfortunately, it is our problem. It’s my problem, it’s your problem, it’s every one’s problem. One of three preschool children is already overweight or obese, and even more are at risk of becoming that way. If you are the parent of young children or you teach or care for young children, most of you stare at childhood obesity every single day. Did you ever think about it that way? If so, what are you doing to fight childhood obesity where you are? I train teachers to add physical activity into what they’re doing in their classrooms and after school, for one. Have you ever been a part of a community-based intervention? One study says this type of intervention works better in children younger than 5 than it does for older kids and teens. We work with a lot of elementary schools nation-wide and I can tell your from experience, this kind of intervention is key for the kids because of the links to parents, community, businesses, etc. I’m curious though, if you really look at obesity in the kids you live with, work with, and play with every day. What does obesity look like to you? What are you doing to combat its effects?