Childhood obesity has more than tripled since the 1970s, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In rare cases, a metabolic disorder or other underlying condition is to blame. However, in most cases a combination of lack of physical activity, not-so-healthy diet, and powerful environmental factors are behind weight-management issues in children.
At Nova Physician Wellness Center, our team offers a comprehensive, family-focused approach to empowering children and families to adopt healthy habits that support healthy weight and growth.
If you’re concerned about your child’s weight, our team can help you turn things around with our individualized pediatric weight-loss program.
The importance of helping your child maintain a healthy weight
In the past, chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes rarely affected children. Today, there’s a rising uptick in the number of children diagnosed with chronic conditions, and extra pounds are a major risk factor.
Children carrying too much weight are at risk for:
- Sleep apnea
- High cholesterol
- Type 2 diabetes
- Fatty liver disease
- High blood pressure
Children who have overweight or obesity are more likely to experience social and psychological struggles as a result.
Educating children about the power of their food choices at home and in school is the foundation for preparing them for a healthy future. Our team takes an evidence-based approach in educating parents and children on how to incorporate more nutritious foods into their daily diets.
Our educational strategy engages, empowers, and motivates children and their families. We’ve seen that nutrition education can lead to genuine change in the food choices of parents and children.
Involving children in the selection and preparation of their food is an effective strategy in familiarizing them with nutrient-packed food options. By selecting foods that taste good and are enjoyable to prepare, children are more likely to stick with their healthy nutrition plan.
Our program aims to check all three boxes of an effective strategy for children: engagement, empowerment, and fun.
Helping children be more active
You won’t have to go it alone when trying to figure out how to help your child be more active. Nova Physician Wellness Center offers individualized activity plans that make fitness fun for youngsters.
Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day, though this doesn’t have to be done all at once. Several small bursts of movement throughout the day are just as beneficial. If your child is not used to being active, we’re prepared to help your child get started and gradually increase to 60 minutes a day.
Tips for for helping your child get moving
Allow your child to select a scheduled activity like a sport or a dance class. Even simple, activities like climbing a jungle gym, playing tag, jumping rope, playing catch, or riding a bike can make a major difference in helping your child adopt an active lifestyle.
Try to curtail your child’s screen time. Limit computers, television, cell phones, and other devices during the day.
Make exercise a social activity. Your child is much more likely to stick with the activity if it’s done with friends or others in the context of socializing.
Helping your family live a healthier life
Clinical data has repeatedly shown that successful treatments include all of the following:
- Dietary adjustments
- Nutritional education
- Increased activity levels
- Involvement of both parents and children
When parents are involved, outcomes are significantly better than when children or parents participate alone.
Our team empowers your child with strategies to maintain healthy habits in vital environments, such as at school, socializing with friends, and dining out at restaurants. This helps kids and parents adopt and maintain an overall healthier lifestyle that supports weight management over the long term.
Sticking with a weight-management program can be challenging. However, when you practice healthier habits, over time those habits will become a normal part of your lifestyle.
At Nova Physician Wellness Center, we’re experts in weight management and can help your child thrive and keep the excess weight off for good. To get started, reach out by calling our office to schedule a visit with one of our providers. We have offices in Fairfax, Ashburn, and Vienna, VIrginia. New and existing patients can also schedule telehealth visits.