Being a fat kid isn’t the best way to spend your growing years. Not only is childhood obesity, an invitation to mocking, bullying and loss of self-pride and respect, but is a physical roadblock to enjoying every experience that childhood throws at kids.
Most fat kids will tell you that they are treated differently (people are kinder and more attentive to thinner kids), that fat bashing is accepted and even lauded at times, that physical activities like swimming are the opposite of a pleasurable experience and the list goes on. And some kids take years to improve their self-image because of the aftermath of all that bullying. Plus, their dietary habits may be affected by a lack of self-pride.
Where does all this lead in the long run? Well, the chubby kid eventually turns into a fat adult.
As hopeless as this may seem, there are many ways in which a fat child can become healthy on their own initiative.
Fat kids generally put on weight owing to their genetic disposition or from bad eating habits. Following this list of curated guidelines can help any child fight off the fat.
Slow The Rate Of Fat Gain
It is important for young kids to not shed weight as they are actually growing. Rather, the key is to maintain your weight based on your frame.
One way to accomplish this is by limiting fat gain. As you age into adolescence, your growth spurts will consume a lot of calories and naturally slim you down.
Don’t Diet. Don’t Supplement.
Unless recommended by a paediatrician, diets or supplements must strictly be avoided. Growing children should not be deprived of calories that are crucial to a developing body, nor should supplements interfere with their natural hormonal balance.
It’s important, however, to keep an eye on the source of the calories. Healthy food equals adequate calories without the side effects of additives and other undesirable substances.
Ask Your Family To Support You
If all you’re getting is ridicule and misplaced pity, you need to take a stand and ask for support. Let your family know that you’re serious about your body image, and you’d be surprised at the kind of backing you receive. Ask your mum to pack in healthy snacks for school, ask your dad to take a brisk walk with you every day—it’ll probably do him some good too!
Start With Small, Achievable Goals
Instead of overhauling your diet completely, it is recommended to make small changes at a time. Here are a few simple tips to healthy eating:
- Swap sugar-sweetened drinks like packaged juices and sodas for water, fresh fruit juices and low/non-fat milk. In fact, try and cut out sugar as much as possible, because it can have serious consequences even when you’re young.
- Ensure that the breakfast is the healthiest meal of the day. A morning meal with whole grains (wheat bread) and protein (peanut butter), will stave off any cravings for snacks.
- Replace refined grains with whole ones like brown or wild rice, quinoa or faro. Make sure you put that in the weekly shopping list.
- Include more fruits, vegetables and reduce sugary snacks, chips, candy and other high calorie, processed food.
- Keep an eye on portion sizes and encourage a number of smaller servings instead of fewer larger ones. That way, food will never go to waste.
Eat Meals Together
A family that eats together is healthier. A study showed that kids, who shared 3 or more meals a week with family, were 20% less likely to eat unhealthy food and 12% less likely to be overweight. Ask your parents to make a meal schedule that doesn’t conflict too much with the family’s diet. Or better yet, get the whole family on your food plan!
As a growing kid, you need at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day.
- Make exercising a family activity. This could be a walk or a bike ride.
- Even if you suck at sports, find a physical activity that you love and pursue it with a vengeance.
- Spend time outside instead of playing video games and other electronic media.
An excellent example of overcoming weight is the story of Anant, the son of Mukesh Ambani.
Anant Ambani lost a staggering 108 kilos in 18 months via natural means. Anant’s fitness regime included a 21 km walk, weight training, yoga, functional training and high intensity cardio exercises. Anant has been suffering from chronic asthma, and the medication led to the weight gain. But with a zero-sugar, low-carb diet, adequate fat and protein, and a commitment to beat the scales, Anant went on to drop all the excess weight and has beaten his fat child demons.
So don’t let the scales weigh you down, every fat kid has a fit kid waiting to shine through!
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