Childhood obesity is now an epidemic in India. With over 15 million obese children, India has the second-highest number of obese children in the world. The prevalence of overweight and obesity in children is over 15%. In private schools catering to upper-income families, the incidence has shot up to 35-40%, indicating a worrying upward trend. Childhood obesity has serious health implications. It triggers hormonal issues like PCOS and thyroid. Obese children are at increased risk of hypertension, osteoarthritis, high cholesterol and triglycerides, Type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, respiratory problems, emotional disturbances, and some cancers.
According to WHO, childhood obesity is one of the most serious public health challenges of the 21st century. The answer to the epidemic of childhood obesity is not any other pill or more protein or less calories but rather a combination of many correct lifestyle changes. In my experience of seeing thousands of people losing weight, I have been sure that it is our habits that will help us rather than any shortcuts and fad diets. There are these 8 simple habits that we want children to adopt on a day-to-day basis to prevent or reverse childhood obesity.
2-3 fruits a day: Eating seasonal fruits is one of the most powerful habits when it comes to creating good health. Fruits contain something known as fiber which is key to good health and weight loss. Always focus on having fruits on an empty stomach. Whatever seasonal fruits they like, but a habit of having 2-3 fruits in a day will help them go a long way.
Minimising packet/processed foods: One of the primary reasons why we have seen a rise in an epidemic of lifestyle diseases in the last 20-30 years is a sharp increase in the consumption of processed and packet foods like chips, biscuits, chocolates, aerate drinks and so on. If you cannot make it zero, ensure that it is significantly minimised. Do not allow them to have it on a day-to-day basis.
Maintaining sleep time & quality: Leptin is the hormone that tells you to stop eating, and when you are sleep deprived, you have less leptin. Hence, we should focus on getting enough sleep and go to bed on time. Ensure that all the devices (like TVs/ mobile phones/ laptops) are restricted one hour before sleep.
Exercise daily: An active lifestyle that may include simple walking regularly also can help boost their metabolism to a great extent. A simple way to lose some weight is regularly walking and exercising.
Salads before meals: Salads before meals help to satisfy hunger, and help prevent overeating. Salads first also guarantee you are getting your veggies which is the key to good health and good quality fiber. Salads before meals also make our body alkaline.
Weight loss detox drink: We should start our day with a herbal concoction that can be freshly made at home with all-natural ingredients like jeera, tulsi, pudina, cinnamon and saunf. Boil all the ingredients in 1 glass of water, strain and drink. This drink helps a lot in weight loss.
Nuts and seeds: Nuts and seeds are good sources of protein, healthy fats, fibres, vitamins and minerals. Nuts and seeds regulate body weight as their fats are not fully absorbed, they regulate food intake, and help burn fat. Chia seeds for example are excellent for weight loss apart from being loaded in nutrition.
Green soup once a day: Green vegetables are always a great source of nutrition be it vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, or phytonutrients. Boil Raw papaya, lauki, beans and drumstick and blend it. Your soup is ready. You can add salt and pepper as per your requirement. Have a bowl of soup once a day.
Simple lifestyle changes and habits can ensure a significant reduction in child obesity rates and making our future generations extremely healthier. Remember weight loss has to be a by-product of our good habits and good health.
(Karan Kakkad is a Disease Reversal expert based in India. He is the Founder & CEO of Reverse Factor. To know more call 8100550660 or visitwww.reversefactor.in)
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