Recently a company in Canada partnered with Ontario's Ministry of Health to help parents of children 12 and under deal with obesity.
This program is very different as it focuses on the parents NOT the children. (The children, however, will have small group sessions with clinical social workers, and will be focused on issues such as depression, anxiety, bullying, self-esteem, anger management and body image.)
This program really shouldn't be too surprising as it's the parents who make those kids' lifestyle choices for them, and it's the parents who provide the role modeling the kids carry with them the rest of their lives as these kids are less than 12 years old!
What is surprising is that most of the parents tried to direct the responsibility for sensible, healthy eating onto their kids. Are they really old enough?
It's not that these parents don't adore their children. It's that we as a society have bought in - hook, line and sinker - to the notion that obesity is a simple personal choice.
One young mother who was interviewed seemed somewhat confused by the notion that personally managing weight was beyond the reach of her pre-teen, still Barbie doll playing daughter! Unbelievable:(
Kids today are just normal kids living in a world where there's a torrent of calories directed at them every day; where governments dupe consumers by lax front of package labeling laws that allow brightly colored breakfast cereals to boast about its nutritional benefits; where schools serve no-name junk food and teach kids that if a chip is baked, it's suddenly good for them; where young parents may be two generations away from regular home cooking and nightly family dinners; and where what were once portions designed for fully grown adults now featured on kids' menus. And that is just the start!!!!
Parents should stop the finger wagging and teach by example not lecture. Take some exercise, start COOKING at home. Then, as a family you will become healthier for now, and for the future.