Did you know that it is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month? This national health awareness campaign happens every September to raise awareness to parents and everyone in the United States about the growing trend of obesity in children across our nation. As a facility that readily promotes a healthy lifestyle to adults and youth, we at ISC Mount Laurel thought we should take the time to help educate others about this health campaign.
Many are often surprised by the health risks that children can acquire due to obesity; unfortunately being ‘young’ does not save them from these issues such as:
- type 2 diabetes
- high blood pressure
- heart disease
Making Positive Changes
Childhood obesity can be easily prevented or turned around (if there is already an issue). Some simple steps your family can make may include:
- Adding more vegetables and fruits for meals and/or snacks; parents may want to limit unhealthy foods in the home.
- Encouraging more physical activities; take a walk as a family after meals, go to local parks more, have you child join in a sport or other physical activity.
- For fun family activities, skip sedentary places and opt for places you can move more, like your local roller skating rink at ISC Mount Laurel!
If you have a picky eater, as many kids are, try to have fun with making healthy snacks for them. Snacks are important for learning to control and manage hunger, so don’t leave them out! Here are some snack ideas from healthfinder.gov:
- “Ants on a log” (celery with peanut butter and raisins)
- Fresh or canned fruit (canned in 100% juice, not syrup) with fat-free or low-fat yogurt
- Whole-grain crackers with low-fat cheese
- Vegetable “matchsticks” (thin sticks made from fresh carrots, zucchini, or bell peppers)
- Whole-wheat bread or apple slices with peanut butter
- Quesadillas (low-fat cheese melted in a whole-wheat tortilla)
- Unsalted pretzels or air-popped popcorn
- Baked (not fried) tortilla chips and salsa
- Whole-wheat pita bread with hummus (dip made with chickpeas)
- Put fresh fruit in a bowl that’s easy to reach
- Pack nuts and unsweetened dried fruits, fresh veggies, or fresh fruit in small baggies.
- Pack low-fat string cheese sticks.
We hope these tips and facts about National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month help a child you know get on track to a healthier lifestyle. (Actually, these tips are great for adults too!)
If you are interested in living a healthier lifestyle, make roller skating one of your weekly exercise routines! ISC Mount Laurel offers a great roller rink and other fun, physical activities that will keep you moving! Please check out our current schedule and stop by our awesome New Jersey facility sometime soon! We look forward to rolling with you!