Nutrition & Exercise
Good eating habits and physical activity are key to a child's healthy growth and development. First 5 CA knows the valuable role parents, care givers and family play in providing nutritious food choices that shape children's life long eating habits. Poor food choices, large portion size and lack of exercise contribute to the increase in obesity among children.
Obesity and overweight can limit childrens' ability to enjoy and participate in many activities during childhood and later in life. Conditions like high blood pressure and cholesterol levels are showing up earlier. Type II diabetes, which was thought to only affect adults, is now found in children. These children also face an increased risk of many chronic diseases like heart disease. Childhood obesity also lowers self esteem, affects relationships with peers and contributes to poor self image. These social and psychological consequences impact children's ability to learn and feel accepted. These problems can be prevented with the help of parents, care givers and family.
Parents, care givers and family can help children maintain a healthy weight by teaching and modeling good eating and physical activity habits during these early years which lay the foundation for a healthy lifestyle in later years.