Folks, we have a problem.
We’re experiencing the worst epidemic of childhood obesity ever to face this country.
But beyond the doom and gloom, there’s good news.
As parents or adult relatives, you have the power to do something about it – starting with one child at a time.
How often do you hear parents (or relatives) say that the kids are glued to the TV or video games, they don’t get enough exercise, and all they want is fast food or junk food?
A lot, eh?
Let’s face it.
Kids aren’t born with bad habits.
They develop them, and it’s usually because they watch adults or family members carefully, whether those people are aware of it or not.
If the people they love or admire most don’t have healthy eating habits, watch TV for hours, are 60 lbs. overweight and don’t exercise, well then guess what? That’s probably a good predictor of what those children will do, too.
Picture this: go to a drive-thru and order a super-sized soda, fries and double cheeseburger with bacon and then make a big fuss about how great it tastes. All the while, Junior is sitting in the backseat, strapped into his car seat, sucking on a bottle of formula.
Then feed him a handful of fries, a bite of burger, and few gulps of soda and watch which foods he wants more of.
For many kids, having too much sugar and processed foods too often helps create the junk food habit that can be difficult to control or break later in life. We know that kids don’t come with an owner’s manual when they’re born and every child responds differently to various food choices. But one thing can be predicted with a high-degree of certainty: if the life you lead includes eating good foods, exercise and being a positive influence, you have a much better chance that your children will lead an active, healthy and productive life. And no one can give them that incredible gift but you.
It’s safe to say that most parents really do want the best for their kids.
As their leader and the one they look up to, one of the best things you can give your child is the gift of good health and it starts with leading by example. When you commit to being in good shape, you’ll exude a positive attitude. Take your child along with you when you exercise, go the gym, and when you go for a swim, walk, hike or bike. When you’re cooking or eating good food, explain to your kids what you’re doing and why the food you’re preparing is so good for them and you. Those young minds are like sponges and they learn very quickly. Remember everything you do sets an example for them that can last a lifetime. So be a great example for them and begin today to live your life by the mantra “Do as I say and as I do!”