Kids’ weight is a complicated topic. In our society today, the value system leans toward being fit and trim–for health and appearance. If your child carries extra weight he or she may be subjected to weight teasing, weight talk, and feel pressure to lose weight. This can damage his or her growing sense of self and body image.
How should you child’s extra weight be handled?
Generally speaking, what should be done about childhood overweight and obesity?
Are childhood obesity prevention strategies enough? Is treatment of overweight and obesity bad? Or, should we approach the whole thing in an entirely different way?
Today I explore the some of the current ways of handling children and their weight, with attention to prevention, treatment and weight acceptance, highlighting the pitfalls and possibilities.
In this episode you will learn:
- The current state of childhood overweight and obesity, according to the latest data from the CDC
- Why many healthcare professionals want to prevent and treat childhood obesity
- The necessary angles of prevention and where we fail with current efforts
- Why some professionals are steering away from obesity treatment in children
- A way to discourage diets and weight loss efforts and embraces self-love and health instead
- How I approach prevention, treatment, and acceptance in my own practice
- What prevention efforts really mean and why including feeding in the mix is important
- One obstacle we need to overcome with prevention efforts (hint: it has to do with timing)
- The dangers of dieting for weight loss in kids and teens (even if they are done with good intentions)
- The aspects of obesity treatment you must focus on, including family meals, weight talk, weight teasing, and body image– and why
- Weight acceptance and Health at Every Size (HAES) for kids
Resources and Links I mentioned in the show:
Prevalence of Childhood and Adult Obesity in the US, 2011-2012 in JAMA
AAP Update Recommendations on Obesity Prevention in Pediatrics
Putting Food in Its Place (podcast episode #002)
Feeding Matters: What’s Your Feeding Style? (podcast episode #003)
Preventing Obesity and Eating Disorders in Adolescents in Pediatrics
Health at Every Size (HAES)
How to Raise a Healthy Child (FREE CHECKLIST)
Learn more about The Nourished Child Project
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Written by: Jill Castle, MS, RDN
Published on: September 15, 2016
Updated on: July 21, 2019