Children’s overweight is often a sensitive subject. Parents and adults in general have to think of ways to bring the subject up. The five tips will help you to discuss the matter in a positive and encouraging way.
- Be positive about your own body. Don’t talk about your weight or the child’s weight in front of the child.
- Make changes to diet and exercise, but don’t mention losing weight.
- Involve the whole family. The child’s overweight concerns everyone, so lifestyle changes affect all family members.
- All people are beautiful as they are. The aim of the child’s weight management is well-being and a healthy adulthood, not a certain body type.
- Compliment and encourage the child.
The aim of children’s weight management is their well-being and a healthy adulthood, not a certain body type or appearance. You should tell children that there are people of all sizes and appearances. All people are beautiful as they are.
Children’s weight management concerns the whole family. Children learn healthy habits together with the family, and these habits will hopefully follow into adulthood. Eating regularly, recognising the feelings of fullness and hunger, following the principles of flexible eating, controlling cravings, finding fun forms of exercise, getting enough sleep and controlling screen time – learning these skills takes time and happens by repetition just like learning other skills, such as playing on swings, reading, controlling emotions, taking care of oneself and using money wisely. Making daily choices and learning about them with the whole family will give everyone a chance to achieve well-being and bring joy and a sense of togetherness!