Talking to Your Children About Their Weight
Talking to your children about their weight can be a sensitive issue to breach, specifically if your child is even slightly overweight. Ignoring the issue is not a viable solution as it won’t go away and your child could grow up to experience a number of health issues, such as diabetes and heart disease.
The best place to start when tackling this subject with your child is to let them know that you are there for them and that you’ll find a solution together. Don’t beat around the bush; let them know what the implications are if they become overweight adults, but let them know that you want to explore healthier options for them because it’s in their best interests.
The most important thing is to protect your child’s self-esteem and not let them become despondent when the matter is raised. Tact and care are of extreme importance and it’s vital that you don’t call your child fat… just gently remind your child that they are overweight and that you’re going to start finding ways to change that, together.
Practical Ways You Can Help Your Child Lose Weight
Here are a few ways that will help you and your child embark on the journey to healthy weight loss.
- 1. Encourage your child to wear a pedometer so that each step they take can be counted as a step towards improving their health. Set a goal for each day by improving on the day before.
- 2. Try and find physical activities for him or her to take part in, where they don’t feel judged or incapable. Dancing? Soccer? Tennis?
- 3. Challenge your child to have a raw vegetable with every lunch and dinner, and a raw fruit with breakfast. Make it your child’s choice as to which fruit or vegetable to have so that they are actively involved in the decision to become healthier.
- 4. Ensure that you’re also following a healthy diet and exercise plan so that your child views you as a role model. If you’re stuffing your face with cake, it’s not fair to expect your child to not want to do the same.
- 5. Make your family meals healthier too, which will be of benefit to everyone. If you’re all embarking on this journey together, your child won’t feel isolated in this process.
- 6. Buy a wide range of healthy snacks so that your child doesn’t get bored and want to have chocolates and crisps.
Remember to invest yourself in this process with your child and to encourage, support and show care along each step of the way.