Legacy, conclusion

In addition to the suggestions previously posted, here are some additional specifics:

1. Promote a diet high in fiber (check the labels of purchased food!)

2. Promote a diet balanced with protein, carbs, and fats. Carbs include fruits and vegetables which should definitely trump the appearance of refined carbs (cookies, pastries, bread, etc.).

3. Encourage moderate to vigorous physical activity- at least 60 minutes a day! It would be great if physical education class was a regular part of school, but whether it is or isn’t, there is a definite need for children to be playing, running, riding bikes, etc. Take family walks or bike rides: do activities together!

4. Sleep is an extremely important factor in children’s health, both the quality and quantity of sleep. “Well-rested kids are more creative, more interested, more responsive and do better in sports. It also will help them eat better.” 1

Suggestions from these three articles are actually lifestyle choices that we as adults make everyday. If you are a parent (or grandparent who has regular input!), remember you are modeling lifestyle choices: good choices that promote wellness, poor choices that promote sickness.

Sometimes, of course, the results of our choices are not immediately visible. However, as is the case with a legacy, the results are inevitably something that will be handed down to the next generation.

Somethings to think about, and hopefully, take action on. I’d like to read your comments below.

References

1. Kate Cronan, MD, associate professor pediatrics, Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia; medical editor at kidshealth.org

American Academy of Pediatrics

Barlow, SE & Expert Committee on the Assessment Prevention and Treatment of Child and Adolescent Overweight and Obesity (2007), Pediatrics, 140 (4), S164-S192

Bowdoin, J.J. (2008) A response to the expert committee’s recommendations on the Assessment¬†Prevention and Treatment of Child and Adolescent Overweight and Obesity,¬†Pediatrics, 121(4), 833-834

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