When your child reaches their teenage years, they are going to be faced with many difficulties. These include getting acne, peer pressure, drinking and driving, and so on. In addition to all of the other stresses a teen faces, teen obesity is rising to the top of the list. Fast food and convenience foods have contributed significantly to the teen obesity problem we are seeing today.
In a world where we want everything as big as we can get it, our teens don’t seem to be an exception. Teens eat more and exercise less. “Unfortunately, the adults in their lives do not often set the best example” suggests teen life coach Sam Miller from Parenting Teenagers Academy. “It is important to try to establish good nutrition habits at a young age so that they can understand the benefits as soon as possible.” There are several contributing factors to our ever-expanding teens and their waistbands.
Television and video games are two of the biggest contributors to teen obesity. When given the choice, a lot of teens are more likely to choose sitting in front of the television, computer, or video game over any outdoor activity. We need to get back to backyard family soccer and activities that support healthy habits. Sports are a great way to encourage more physical activity. Every increase in activity is a step in the right direction to burn more calories to begin a path that will guide us towards a healthier youth.
Junk Food and Drink
Another major contributor to teen obesity is the amount of junk food and sugary drinks/soda pop that are so readily available. Even as adults, a lot of the time it is easier to grab a candy bar than to take the time and effort to prepare something healthier, yet if you set the right example from a young age with your kids, it can be an important first step. One of the things that parents-and teens-have to realize is that it is never too late to change eating and activity habits. Join your teen in developing better habits to help fight against teen obesity.
Health Effects of Teen Obesity
There are many negative effects teen obesity can have that will carry throughout their lifetime. It is common for obese teens to have problems with diabetes, sleep apnea, and high blood pressure. But health is not the only thing an obese teen struggles with. Obese teens often also face ridicule from their peers. While teen obesity is on the rise, there is still the model-thin mentality, especially among teen girls, thanks to the media. Being obese affects teen self confidence. It can lead to depression. The cost of being an obese teen is almost immeasurable. It can have a lifetime of lasting effects, both mental and physical.
There are so many health benefits to becoming more active and making more nutritious choices. Being healthy can have such a positive effect on the mental well-being that is so important for teens and their successful, healthy navigation through adolescence. It is important to find the right kind of motivation for each individual teen. Motivation is especially important in the beginning to be successful in making the lifestyle change necessary to achieve health and weight loss goals. Starting to make healthier life choices can truly make a difference between life and death.