We celebrated National Yoga Awareness Month this month and we are also recognizing National Childhood Obesity Awareness in September, too! A scary statistic is that one in three children in the United States or either overweight or obese. We know the health risks obesity influences on adults so imagine the impact it has on our children. In adults, obesity typically correlates with diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease. For the sake of our kids, let’s take action!
Fortunately, childhood obesity can be prevented. I have heard it said and witnessed that it literally takes a village to raise a child. Community, health professionals, and families can work together for children to be more active, healthy, and with a chance to live a very productive life.
As this epidemic rises, it’s time for us to make small changes because those small changes add up to changing children’s lives. It does start with the responsibility of the parent to provide healthy foods for their children such as fresh fruits and vegetables. Working in pediatrics at present, I stress the importance of the role of the parent to provide their child opportunities to be active and to choose healthy foods.
Former First Lady Michelle Obama spent much of her time during the presidency focusing on making schools healthier. Children spend a significant part of their day in school so providing physical activities and healthy food options for children are vital for success! You can now find extended physical fitness times, fresh fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy, and whole grain options.
Our local community in the Wiregrass area offers club sports, recreational sports, a waterpark, nature trails, and beautiful playgrounds for children to enjoy. Set some time apart this month to make a difference in a child’s life by making physical activity fun and making healthy food fun! That may look like a play date at the playground, or building animals with fruit. Our children are our tomorrow. Give them the healthy lifestyle they deserve so they can live out their purpose because they feel good and are good!