It’s a sad but true fact that childhood obesity has more than tripled in the last three decades.
Just 30 years ago diabetes was viewed as an “old” person’s disease. Not any longer.
The real, but sad truth is, young adults, those not even into their teens yet, are being diagnosed with diabetes in frightening numbers. In fact, the number of children that require medication to control their diabetes has actually increased a whopping 150 percent in that time-frame!
It would seem with all the advances in medical science, lifespans would be increasing across the board as well. However, childhood diabetes has gotten so bad that nearly one in three children will likely develop diabetes before turning 18 years of age and those born after the year 2000 that develop diabetes will be the first generation in recorded history that does not outlive their parents!
The reality is, the world we are raising our children in is vastly different than it was for our parents and grandparents. Overweight children used to be the exception, they are now everywhere.
What is causing this epidemic that is damaging and destroying our children’s health at such an early age?
Believe it or not, the same issue that plagues adults – sedentary lifestyles is the primary reason for childhood obesity.
Inactivity leads to a host of health problems and there is a very strong link between becoming overweight and or obese, a sedentary no exercise lifestyle, and diabetes.
Normally muscle cells process any sugar that is in the blood for energy but when muscles are not actively used, there is no place for this excess sugar to go and it ends up circulating round the body along with insulin, the hormone that is supposed to control it. This causes damage to sensitive cells and tissues. Major organs like the heart, kidneys and eyes are all affected.
We cannot blame our children. Children are copy-cats and they are watching everything you do. As adults, we have no one to look to for this unfortunate situation but ourselves and the lifestyles we are leading. If we are not taking proper steps – that include challenging exercise and healthy eating to improve our own health how can we expect them to do so?
If they watch us spending our spare time sitting in front of a computer, TV or tablet screen day after day guess what? They do the same with their video games, television shows and computers.
The fault lies solely with us. As adults we must set a good example. We need to clean up our act before it filters down to them. We need to take a positive role in encouraging our children to be more active and to eat better and the best way to do that is to show them through example.
Children are smarter than we give them credit for. Don’t be afraid to start teaching them at a very early age about their bodies and how to keep them healthy and fit. Teach them about food ingredients and show them how to cook from scratch and how and why to avoid foods that will ruin their health such as excess sugar, harmful fats and chemicals. Get them excited about exercising.
Talk is cheap, it’s “walking the talk” that works. Go outside and play active games with them. Children love when their parents get involved and share time with them. Take them to the gym with you and allow them to see you in action and watch their faces light up and they declare that they want to be “just like you.”
With proper exercise and healthy eating, many of the current diseases and chronic lifestyle issues such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer – all associated with a sedentary lifestyle, can be avoided and won’t negatively affect our children before their time.
Remember, inactive children become inactive adults while active children become active adults. All these healthy exercise and eating habits you are teaching them will be with them for life.
Give your child the gift of life. Believe me, they will thank you later on when it’s time to pass down these valuable nutritional and exercise habits to their own children.
Help them take command of their life, regain vitality, boost energy levels and lead a higher quality of life…
For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit:
Isn’t it time to throw away all the false statements you’ve accepted about dieting and exercise and learn what it really takes to stay healthy and fit long into your senior years?