People are getting fatter. And not just in the U.S. The rate of obesity is increasing all over the map, including Hong Kong. But what’s especially frightening is how many kids are becoming part of those statistics. Now, it’s up to us parents to curb these scary numbers.
Gone are the days when kids would hang out in the backyard, running around all afternoon, then dash home for a sit-down family meal. In are the days when kids are sitting long hours in front of their computers, iPads and television sets. And if they’re not doing that, they are just as busy with homework and afterschool activities. Getting the whole family to sit down for a meal at the same time seems to be rare.
With their more sedentary lifestyles, together with their incredibly busy schedules, kids are either sitting around and eating too much, or being thrown quick, processed foods on their plates to gobble down in order to give them the energy boost they need to handle the rest of the day. Not to mention all the junk food that’s loaded with sugar they snack on all throughout the day.
As a result, kids are packing on the pounds – quick. Too quick. And on top of it, there are all of these tasty – but unhealthy – temptations out there for kids to indulge in. Whether it’s soda or ice cream or candy, most of what kids prefer to eat is just junk, which are empty calories. They add nothing nutritional in the kids’ lives and only add unwanted fat.
Of course, kids will do what they want to do. But it is up to the parents to lead by example and ensure that their children will learn what’s best. Every one of us is busy with our own schedules, but giving your kids cup o’ noodles for dinner instead of a homemade chicken noodle soup, or defrosting a frozen meal five out of seven nights is simply not healthy for your children. Find the time to make healthy meals. Make sure your kid joins you in the cooking process when they have time, even if it’s just cutting up a few cucumbers. Make it fun. Let them see what they are about to eat. Explain to them the effects of sugar and what are smart foods to eat. Educate them and lead by example. And don’t forget to make sure they get outdoors and exercise as well!
It’s time to realize that the next generation’s health is in our hands. Don’t let commercial ads promoting processed junk sway you and your kids that it’s all right. Get in your kitchen and do a summer cleaning and get rid of all those foods that do absolutely nothing for you and your kids other than satiate a temporary craving. Refill with healthy foods. It’ll result in a healthy life for you and your family!