Importance of Obesity Prevention in Preschoolers

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    By: ActivityTree

    Most people would agree that it is easier to keep the weight off than to lose it.  This holds true for children as well.  A recent study highlights the importance of ingraining healthy habits in children under 5 years old.

    The study found that community-based programs involving parents, schools and health-care institutions were virtually ineffective in adolescents and only marginally effective in school age children.  In fact, these strategies, which involved efforts to increase healthy eating and physical activity, were most successful in children age 5 and under. 

    The group of children under 5 years old was 3% less likely to be overweight or obese than other five year olds that did not participate in the intervention programs.  The presenter stated “Our results, together with the evidence from other demonstration projects conducted elsewhere, suggest we should get moving to scale up efforts in the under-5s.”

    As parents, we can’t wait for our children to participate in a community-based program.  We need to make the difference at home by teaching our children healthy eating habits and keeping them active every day. 

    The summary of the study findings were presented by Professor Boyd Swinburn, from the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Obesity Prevention at the International Congress on Obesity in Stockholm, Sweden in July of 2010. 

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