Tue | Jul 17, 2018

Dynamic Lifestyle | Childhood Obesity - An epidemic we can solve

Published:Monday | June 6, 2016 | 12:00 AMPatrice White
Obesity in children is a growing concern.
An overweight person digs into a box of fast food.

Food is everywhere. In fact, let me rephrase that - the glorification of food is everywhere. Take a few minutes and make a mental note of all the images of food that you see around you. Many of these may even be subtle and seen as harmless.

Of course, food isn't purely harmful - in fact, real, clean food is meant to provide nutrition to our bodies. However, 'food' has taken on a whole different meaning, and our children and many parents are struggling because they do not fully understand how to create a healthy relationship with food.

This is why some have tried diets, or have been pulled into the multimillion dollar market for childhood obesity. These markets provide a range of camps, therapies and diets. However, you and I know that developing healthy lifestyle practices demands more than just quick fixes. This is primarily so because quick fixes do not address the critical side effects of childhood obesity, such as depression, bullying, low self-esteem, and even thoughts of suicide.

So, let's face it - there is no miracle pill that will solve childhood obesity. This is why over the next few weeks, we are going to take our time to address this very taboo topic. Please be sure to share your thoughts and help us to start a positive movement for our children.

Today, we will get this conversation started by seeking to develop a better understanding of the issue:


1. Childhood obesity affects the entire family.


Let's be real. A child with a poor self-image may struggle because of peer pressure, teasing, or depression. As this child seeks to mentally, physically, and emotionally handle such situations, parents, and siblings are also affected.


2. Childhood obesity leads to a 'blame game'.


It's human to seek reasons for different things that are happening around us. As it relates to childhood obesity, some may blame the child, others the parents, others will talk about the lack of access to information, and others may blame obesity on poor finances.


3. Childhood obesity suggests that we need more information.


There are many questions that we need to reflect on if we are going to seriously address the issue of childhood obesity. These include: What are the roles of the different food groups in our child's diet? How can we help our children to develop a healthy and sustainable lifestyle? Will healthy food always have a bad taste? What is a bad taste, anyway? How many times per week should our child be engaged in physical activities?

Next time, we'll look at an ongoing local case study, along with statistics on childhood obesity. This will help us as parents, guardians, families, teachers, friends, etc., to help our children to grow into the best dynamic version of themselves.

Please join in on the conversation by sharing your thoughts. Remember to be kind and helpful, as we can work together to solve this issue. Also, if you have been affected by childhood obesity I'd love to hear from you. Please drop me an email at info@patricejwhite.com, to share your story or ask questions. Feel free to hit me up on Twitter and IG @PatriceJWhite with your thoughts on today's article.

• Patrice J. White is a certified lifestyle and transformation coach and founder and president of the Sonic Steppers Running Club. Visit her online at www.patricejwhite.com. Email: info@patricejwhite.com. Instagram/Twitter @Patricejwhite. Give her a call at 876-GETTFIT (876-438- 8348).