Teens and obesity is becoming one of the quickest growing health issues around the world, but particularly in the US. We thrive on immediate gratification, eating fast food and not getting outside to get exercise.
We, as parents, feel almost powerless as we watch our children endure the teasing and whispers as they try to walk down the street. As much as this affects us as parents, the affects on our children are ten-fold.
Below are the effects teen obesity has on our children and what we as parents can do about it.
1) Teenage Obesity Is An Eating Disorder ~ At it’s core teen obesity is an eating disorder much like anorexia or bulimia. It is likely that your child adopted their eating habits during their adolescence and to escape the pain of their peers teasing them about their weight, they began to use food to medicate themselves to escape the pain.
2) Depression ~ Studies have shown obese teens are almost three times as likely to experience severe depression. The teasing from other children leads to low self-esteem and results in many children attempting suicide. Get your teen help. They may need a Psychologist to help them to cope with obesity and to help them rebuild their self-esteem.
3) Unconditional Love and Support ~ Your teen is going through emotional, physical and mental hell. They will need your unconditional love and unwavering support in order to conquer their disorder. Celebrate their success with them and join them in their efforts.
4) Tough Love ~ During the process your teen is going to fight you, sometimes every step of the way. You need to remain strong and sometimes that will mean giving your teen tough love by denying them the foods they crave.
Teenage obesity dramatically shortens a child’s life expectancy. It leads to diabetes and other health related diseases and can cause severe depression.
Remember, your child’s success will depend upon you and your commitment to their health and well-being. You must choose healthier foods to feed to your overweight teen.