Why is the American Heart Association so concerned about sugar? “Overconsumption of added sugars has long been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease,” meaning heart disease and strokes. We used to think added sugars were just a marker for an unhealthy diet. At fast-food restaurants, for example, people may be more likely to order a cheeseburger with their super-sized soda than a salad. However, the new thinking is that the added sugars in processed foods and drinks may be independent risk factors in and of themselves. Indeed, worse than just empty calories, they may be actively disease-promoting calories, which I discuss in his video Does Diet Soda Increase Stroke Risk as Much as Regular Soda?.
Robert Murray, MD (Action for Healthy Kids (AFHK) Board Member) and Grace Perry, RD, LD (AFHK Program Manager) recently shared that children are the products of their environment and experiences; like sponges, they absorb all that’s around them. They’re constantly picking up language, mannerisms, ideas, and habits. The people in a child’s life — especially during their formative years — will have a lasting influence on them for years to come.
That’s why it’s critical for everyone from family members to teachers to coaches to faith leaders to understand the impact they have on a child’s diet and nutrition and the resources they have available to support children’s healthy eating habits from the start. Diet quality can affect a child’s growth. Not only can it change their physical development, but it impacts cognition, behavior, well-being, and ability to deal with life’s challenges as kids grow older.
Despite the fact that there is an abundance of publicly and privately funded programs and resources with the goal of improving children’s healthy eating opportunities, experts agree that these resources don’t always stretch far enough or get to those who need them the most. Furthermore, an urgent need for these programs is often unforeseen for parents who may have sudden financial obstacles to overcome. Read more
Chris Nguyen, is the Founder & Chief Editor at Sleep Standards, a health blog that provides research-based sleep health advice, actionable sleep tips, and unbiased sleep product reviews that aims to inspire better sleep and make the world of sleep easy to understand for everyday people, shared with Healthy Lombard that Obesity has become a global concern. In modern times, medical experts consider obesity a disease, causing millions of people to lose the battle against serious chronic diseases and die at an age considered too early.
Several factors have been found to play a role in the risk of developing obesity. Among children, one of the latest advancements in scientific research suggests that sleep deprivation might be an overlooked risk factor. We take a look at the impact of obesity on a child’s life, the risks that excess weight can cause the child to suffer from later in their lives, and how sleep deprivation may be making this problem worse.
The Impact Of Obesity Among Children
Obesity is a serious health condition that refers to excess weight in the human body. While it is relatively easy to diagnose obesity in adults, as this condition is classified as having a BMI that is over 30, it is not as simple to determine if a child is obese.
Still, it is important for parents to learn about the impact that obesity can have on their child, know when obesity is becoming a problem, and understand the potential solutions that they can use to improve their child’s quality of life.
Childhood obesity refers to excess weight found in children between the ages of two and 19. Thus, the term collectively describes obesity among young ones ranging from infants up to adolescents. Read more
Dr. Pete here from Cool Springs Chiropractic just finished writing a very detailed guide about How to Eat Healthy on a Budget because food can be expensive. He writes that there’s no doubt about that. However, it doesn’t mean that only healthy food is expensive. Surprisingly, junk foods are costlier at most times than healthy options. You may not agree with this if you’ve never taken time to consider healthy options that you can take on a budget. It all boils down to two key things; preparation and decision-making.
You have to prepare to only buy healthy options. You also need to be decisive on what you plan to buy on a budget. This not only saves you money but your health too. The primary source of defense for your body is the food you eat. So, the healthier your options are, the healthier your body is likely to be. Having said that; here are 10 steps to eating healthy on a budget:
Step 1 – Create and Stick to a Healthy Meal Plan
We’ve already mentioned planning as a critical point. To get you started, you need to establish your budget. Out of it, make a grocery list that features healthy food items. Ensure that it’s indicated how much you are willing to spend on every item on your grocery list. You should never visit a store on a budget if you are not decided on what to get.
Though it’s tempting to buy fancy foodstuffs when you visit a store, it’s paramount that you stick to your meal plan. In case you are left with some money after you’ve bought everything on your grocery list, you can buy the fancy stuff. But make sure they are not unhealthy. Read more
Krista Harper is a freelance writer and yoga instructor in Southern California. She regularly covers lifestyle, mental health, and nutrition topics and has a passion for helping people create balance in their lives. Kris’s ta shared with Healthy Lombard that despite receiving a lot of media attention, childhood obesity remains a problem in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 14% of children age two through five are obese, and its prevalence jumps to over 18% for the 6 to 11-year-old demographic, and over 20% for ages 12 through 19. And with U.S. obesity continuing to grow, the disease shows no signs of slowing anytime soon. Obesity is contributing to health problems not usually seen in children, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
What causes obesity, and what can parents do to prevent it, or help an overweight or obese child? Read on to learn more.
Causes of Obesity
Some researchers believe that genetics and hormone imbalances are contributing to childhood obesity. While these two factors can certainly affect weight, there are many things about modern society that make it difficult for children to maintain a healthy weight. These include:
An Unhealthy Diet
An unhealthy diet that contains a lot of fast and processed foods is a leading cause of childhood obesity. A 2017 survey found that many U.S. children go days without eating any vegetables. Parents should strive to feed their kids balanced meals that contain enough servings of produce, lean protein, and dairy products while limiting sugary foods and drinks. Read more
In fact, the yoga is tremendously beneficial for children as it promotes neuromuscular development, improves body awareness and offers basic stretching and strengthening.
In addition to this, yoga also helps maintain flexibility, strengthens a growing body, enhances concentration, cultivates a relaxed state of body and mind, helps with stress management, sparks creativity in young minds, and teaches discipline and responsibility.
If you plan to teach your children yoga, then do not worry about practicing it perfectly. You need to focus more on helping them practice gentle movements that feel comfortable and help them increase their body awareness.
You also need to teach your children that yoga is not a destination; rather it is a lifetime journey that can help them lead a healthy life in the coming years.
As rates of chronic disease among children have skyrocketed over the past few decades, pediatricians have increasingly looked for solutions beyond the clinic. Sometimes that means actually prescribing time outside. Special correspondent Cat Wise reports from Oakland on the medical evidence that indicates escaping modern urban life, even temporarily, can yield health dividends.
Special correspondent Cat Wise has a story from Oakland, California. It is part of their regular series on the Leading Edge of science and health.
Her report features primary care doctor Nooshin Razani who prescribes an unconventional prescription for the great outdoors. At the clinic run by UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in Oakland, Razani and her colleagues check on time spent outside nearly as much as they check their patients’ pulse, weight, and blood pressure.
Their goal is to write outdoor prescriptions as often as they prescribe pills — and to keep the dosage high.
Depression, anxiety, and obesity rates in America have spiked in recent years, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now estimating that nearly one in five children is obese.
Erika Long is a freelance health and wellness writer who shared with Healthy Lombard that it can be difficult to get kids into a consistent sleep routine. With increasing pressure at school, hyperactive minds, and distractions such as televisions and mobile devices, it’s hard for kids to calm down enough to relax and sleep. When children resist sleeping, it is easy to throw in the towel and just say, “They’re kids, they’ll be fine.” But several studies show that sleep deprivation is detrimental to their health. Here are five benefits to creating healthy sleep habits in your kids.
1. Boosts Immunity
If your child regularly struggles with the flu and other infections, it may be time to look into their sleep patterns. Fighting infections requires a strong immune system and although most kids are born with good immunity, chronic sleep deprivation potentially weakens the immune system as they start growing.
Studies show that in both children and adults, sufficient sleep is mandatory to release enough amounts of cytokines in the body. Cytokines are proteins that help manage inflammation through cell-to-cell communication through the body’s immune system. They also fight physiological stress caused by infections, producing a drowsy effect in the process. If your child is unwell and wants to sleep longer, let them. It is their body’s natural defense mechanism working hard to restore their health.
Research carried out in recent times also shows that sleep apnea in children is caused by disrupting the body’s natural defense mechanism, causing vulnerability in terms of contracting short-term, frequent illnesses.
2. Promotes growth hormones
One of the reasons behind the rapid growth in infants is the secretion of human growth hormone during their long hours of sleep. Growth spurts tend to decrease as children grow older, yet most young children in their growing years tend to wake up taller some mornings because of the growth hormones released during their sleep the previous evening.
Conversely, if sleep is disrupted, production in childhood growth hormone could be sufficiently reduced to make children grow into shorter adults. Being tall depends on many factors, including genes, but children have the best chance at growth when they get adequate amounts of sleep.
Recent studies have shown growth hormones are at their peak just after the onset of sleep, especially in infants. Hence, the first sleep cycle is extremely important for the healthy growth in children. Read more