Child Obesity

Child Obesity Image - Photo credit Microsoft Child obesity is a problem in today's society due to the decrease in physical activity. Children at risk are diagnose with elevated blood pressure, blood lipids and plasma insulin. Fitness should be a learning experience that encourages good habits, positive attitudes and fun. Parents, teachers and other adults should be role models and participate in healthy eating and active exercises.

Recommendations for starting obese children in a fitness program are as follows:

1. Mode of Activity. Assist your child in finding a fitness activity that engages all the muscle groups. The duration of the activity should be 30-60 minutes depending on the child endurance due to his/her weight. Activities can include swimming, jogging, aerobic dance or team sport. The physical activity should promote agility, speed and fun.

2. Intensity. The intensity of the exercise should begin low and gradually increase as the child adapt to the physical fitness program. The heart rate should be monitor using the Borg scale.

3. Duration. A specific day and time should be set aside for the physical activity. It should at a minimum last 20-30 minutes long that challenge the child.

4. Frequency. Exercise should become a routine at least 2-3 times a week. It should also contain not only cardio activities but resistance and free weights training to tone the muscles.

Nutrition is also a factor that should be considered with exercise. Drinking more water and fewer sodas can also reduce weight. Fast foods such as French fries, pizzas, fried chicken and hamburgers, have many calories and the size may exceed what is recommended for a serving. Nutritious meal containing fruits, vegetables and whole grains will develop good eating habits early n the child's life. Children who adhere to an exercise program learn lifestyle habits that will decrease risk for disease.