My child is a bit overweight; should I see if a diet will help my child? He/She needs to lose some weight ASAP!
Do you often find yourself in this situation? Or know someone who does. You might want to give this a read
Let us first understand what we are trying to do: Make the child healthier and fit! Is dieting really required? Definitely not! Well, if not dieting, how do you do it?
- Introduce some physical activity into your child's routine - Encourage your child to go out and play a sport with their friends. At times, I have seen healthy children get teased and do not enjoy going out, what to do there? How about a martial art? It will not only make them fit but also build up their confidence
- Screens off! - Try to limit their gadget/computer time as the addiction to gadgets make them less active and trust me, your 11-year-old does not NEED an iPhone!
- Prepare meals and make them a part of the process: Rather than just handing over lunch money to your kid to eat from the canteen, prepare meals for them. Introduce some variety and make them pick. Children are often fascinated with colors and making them part of the selection process. It makes them feel important. Take them fruit or vegetable shopping with you.
- Do not restrict them: Restricting food items from a young age can lead to long term food eating disorders and development of a phobia. This, in turn, can lead to severe problems in future. Do not stop them from having the occasional chocolate or ice-cream, they are kids after all. But, DO NOT make food a reward. That if they have stood out in any athletic event or become fitter, ice-cream as a reward is not the answer. That is the start to the problem!
- Make healthy choices yourself: Your child looks up to you and learns a lot of things from you. If every weekend involves sitting at home and ordering pizza or going to KFC or McD's, you are to be blamed. Go out, but you can still make good choices. Having Indian, Mughlai or Sushi is a much better option than your KFC or Pizza Hut. Choose wisely.
Contributor: Pratik Thakkar (CoFounder, GetSetGo Fitness)