Updated: 09/15/2016 4:26 PM | Print Story |  Email

Battling Childhood Obesity

Sugar has dominating the health headlines. That's because a new article says the sugar industry paid Harvard Scientists to blame heart disease on fat -- and downplay the role of sugar. But it's no secret that sugar is a huge factor when it comes to childhood obesity. And Dr. Ryan Dick from Entira Family Clinics says helping your kids stay at a healthy weight starts at home. 
 
Childhood obesity is on the rise and Dr. Dick offers the following explanations as to why:
 
- Carbs & sugar
  • yogurt: varieties with added fruit on the bottom usually contain a high amount of sugar, 24g
  • canned soup: you can find up to 15 grams of sugar per 1.5 cups in certain varieties
  • dried fruit: just a handful of dried cranberries, for instance, can contain up to 29 grams of sugar
- Low physical activity
- Adults not setting the best examples
 
1 in 5 kids are considered obese. Kids are considered obese if their body mass index is in the 95th percentile for their age. 
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 18% of Americans 6 to 11 years-old and 21% of 12 to 19 year-olds were considered obese in 2012. Check your child’s bmi at www.cdc.gov.
 
Dangers of childhood obesity
  • often more at risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes
  • more likely to become obese as adults 
  • ultimately have a higher risk of stroke, sleep apnea, heart disease, certain cancers, and early arthritis
  • likely to be on way more medications, need more doctor visits, and end up with more surgeries than other adults
  • emotional health: insecurity, depression, and anxiety 
What can we do?
  • you are in charge of what your kids eat. They are in charge of how much they eat
  • make your child pick a sport or physical activity a few times a year
  • be active as a family - dedicate 2 days out of the week (at a minimum)