How the Eating Habits of Adults Affect Obesity in Children

In order to live, we must eat. Somewhere in our history, we stopped eating to live and started living to eat. This obsession with food has led to not only obesity in adults, but a rising obesity in children. Let’s examine the eating habits that can lead to obesity in children and the ways to change those habits.

Making Poor Food Choices

Nowadays, children have access to all types of food. In school cafeterias, there are snack vending machines, soda machines, and fast food restaurant counters. It used to be that kids brought their lunches to school, but now most kids buy their lunch since it’s easy and they can eat virtually anything they want. At malls, the availability of non-nutritious foods is more prevalent than good, healthy food choices.

And it’s not just about what we eat — it’s about what we drink. According to various studies, drinking sodas even once a day increases the childhood obesity risk by sixty percent — let me repeat that — just one soda a day can increase a child’s risk of being obese by 60 percent!

Sodas are sugar and empty calories. A single serving of soda can pack a whopping 120 calories to 180 calories. Remember, that’s per serving. And if you’ve read a soda “nutrition” label, you’ll see that in a 20-ounce soda there are two and a half servings. Drinking the entire bottle will fill you with about 300 calories added to your daily consumption. That amounts to an entire meal’s worth of calories with absolutely no nutritional value. That’s 300 calories of absolutely zero nutrition.

Even so-called diet sodas cause a risk as they give a false security that a child is receiving a healthy alternative. Diet drinks have been shown to actually cause weight gain for this reason. Children, and adults alike, falsely believe they can have a diet drink and then eat a donut because they saved those extra calories. There are a lot of obese people walking around carrying diet drinks – why is that?

The Wrong Sorts of Snacks

When kids come home from school and start in on their homework, they get the munchies. Their little hands just naturally grab for something to snack on. Then, it’s time to relax. That’s when our snacking goes into overdrive. We easily overeat when we are mindlessly watching television, looking through a magazine, or surfing the Internet. Typically, the snacks we grab are sugary, salty, high calorie, and high fat. The problem with this snacking is, just like with sodas, we can eat a lot of unhealthy snacks before we are filled up and those snacks have no nutritional value. By then, the damage to our daily caloric intake is done.

Help You to Help Them

Changing your eating habits will set an example and help your child change their habits too. However, changing eating habits requires changing how you look at food. Don’t go for convenience; make time to eat the right foods. Get into the habit of preparing healthy snacks. Cut up an apple to eat with a little peanut butter. Grab a banana and eat it while you study. Have healthy snacks available for those times when we all naturally snack.

Bad eating habits is one of the biggest causes of obesity in children. It is far too easy to fall into an unhealthy eating habit. We are bombarded with unhealthy foods both at home and away. Make your home a healthy atmosphere by removing unhealthy foods from your pantry. Good health and the fight against obesity in children begins at home.

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