September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness month, so it’s a great opportunity to teach kids the importance of being active and healthy. According to Healthfinder, 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese in the United States. Childhood obesity can lead to a number of serious health problems such as diabetes, asthma and heart failure.
Other factors leading to child obesity are:
- Lack of daily physical activity
- Increased meal portion sizes
- High consumption of sugary beverages
- Excessive screen time
So here are 6 great ways to keep kids active:
Play “Unorganized” Sports
Organized sports can teach kids valuable lessons such as team work and sportsmanship, but unorganized sports can be fun too! Jumping rope or throwing around a Frisbee are great ways to keep kids moving.
Play With Your Kids
Go on a family bike ride or create an obstacle course using the local park’s playground equipment. Kids love playing with adults – and you’ll get some exercise out of it too!
There are an unlimited amount of games you can play in the pool or on the trampoline. Play Marco Polo or throw around a beach ball in the pool. If you have a trampoline, put 5 colored balls on the trampoline and have your kids jump around to avoid touching the balls.
Go On Weekend Adventures
Take them outdoors and go camping, hiking or to the beach. If the weather isn’t cooperating, take them to an indoor trampoline park, play place or a children’s museum.
For the Teenagers in Your Life
KidsHealth recommends that teens get at least one hour of physical activity each day, but physical activity tends to lag during these years. However, teens can easily fit it into their everyday routines by doing chores or walking to school. Or, encourage them to find a part-time job where they can be active and earn a little extra cash - like babysitting, dog walking, car washing, doing yard work, lifeguarding at the local pool and more.
Eat at Home
According to WebMD, cooking and eating dinner with your kids can help get them interested in trying healthier foods. Eating at home also gives you total control over what foods go into your child’s body and the portion sizes. Lastly, it brings the whole family together. Take this time to make jokes, tell stories and catch up with your kids!
Since children are the future of our world, now is the time to prepare them for a healthy life!