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Weight loss and Children
The 1999-2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) results indicate that approximately 15% of children and adolescents are overweight. What these results demonstrate is that between the 1960s to the 1980s, the percentage of overweight children was relatively stable. However, since the early 1980s, the percentage of overweight children has risen dramatically - from 7% to 11% in children (ages 6-11) and from 5% to 11% in teens (ages 12-19). In other words, the percentage of overweight children and teens almost doubled in the past decade or so. Experts are very alarmed at these statistics, considering that overweight children and adolescents are at far greater risk of becoming overweight or obese adults than are healthy weight children and adolescents.
The chart below indicates the rise in the percentage of overweight children and adolescents over the past few decades.
Diet Pills for obese children
Xenical prescription diet pills have recently recently been approved for use in adolescent children for weight loss. Xenical is the only FDA approved prescription diet pill. Encouraging a healthy weight for children
Children require proper nutrition for growth. Experts all agree that this starts in the home. As with adults, a wide variety of foods should be incorporated into diet. Allow the child to decide how much of these healthy foods they eat. Limit all foods that are high in sugar and fat, including fast foods. Generally speaking, children should not be encouraged to lose weight. Rather, they should be encouraged to eat better foods and engage in more physical activity. Unless a health care practitioner has advised a parent to stress "weight loss" in a child's life, healthy living should be the focus.
Encourage children to engage in physical activities
Many of the rules that apply to adults apply to children; however, it's usually easier to introduce activity into a child's life. Children don't need fitness trainers and gyms. They need to engage in active play, and the more often the parents join them, the better. Encourage children to participate in sports and activities that interest them. Take them swimming or to the park, instead of watching TV or playing computer games.
Help children to develop healthy eating habits. Make small changes. For example, serve low-fat milk rather than whole milk and offer one cookie instead of two. Since children still need to grow, weight loss programs are not recommended unless suggested by a health care provider.
Weight Loss and Teens
Weight loss in teens can be encouraged using the methods discussed above, however overweight teens present some different challenges. Teenagers often want a fast weight loss solution that requires little energy on their part. The most effective tool any parent can use to achieve weight loss in teenagers is to ensure that they themselves are setting a good example in terms of diet and exercise.
Teenage obesity presents other unique challenges that may require obesity medication or obesity surgery. If you have an obese child, talk to your pediatrician today to prevent that child from becoming an obese teen.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers excellent resources and information about weight loss, weight management and the promotion of healthy lifestyles. The American Obesity Association offers excellent advice and resources for encouraging weight loss in children and adults. Phentermine is the leading prescription medication used for the short term treatment of obesity.
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