Childhood obesity has become an epidemic in the developed world!
Australia is not immune to this….
Other factors include: decreased physical activity, genetics, depression, family habits and cultural food preferences.
7 factors that increase the risk of obesity include:
1. Lack of home cooked family dinners – children rarely sit down at the table with the whole family.
Parents are a lot busier and have less time to sit down as a family.
2. The increase of highly processed meals and take-away dinners.
3. Soda/soft drinks/packaged juices – full of sugars and consumed daily.
4. Poor role modelling – some overweight and obese parents tend to have poor dietary habits.
Some parents don’t have basic nutrition knowledge and rely on processed foods. Children will follow as an example. Less likely to have healthy snack/food options available.
5. Traumatic events (parental divorce etc) – stress and depression can trigger comfort eating in children.
Other examples: death in the family. Family illnesses. Abusive or tense family environments.
School: bullying, teacher conflicts, academic stress etc.
6. Junk food in lunchboxes – packed with high processed/sugar foods.
Can contribute towards behavioural problems. Ready-made lunch box snacks are ‘health-washed’ with a ‘smoke-screen’ label. Can be mistaken as nourishing instead of low nutrition and high sugar content. https://www.facebook.com/sandwichfreepacketfreelunchboxes/?ref=bookmarks
7. Portion sizes – fast food outlets are a classic example. Up-sizing or super-sizing can provide large amounts of poor quality nutrition. Contain ingredients that can contribute to weight gain: trans fats, sugar, high sodium, additives and preservatives.