According to statistics, obesity rates in South Africa are increasing rapidly, with almost 70% of women and 40% of men either overweight or obese. (www.health.gov.za)
What is obesity?
Obesity is a health issue that is defined by having a high percentage of body fat. A body mass index (BMI) of
30 or higher is an indicator of obesity.
Did you know?
• Overeating happens when you eat when you are not hungry. This excess fuel becomes stored as body fat and can lead to obesity.
• Children and adults who don’t get enough sleep may end up weighing more.
• Obesity is associated with a long list of chronic health conditions that may be difficult to treat over time (Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, gallbladder issues, sexual health issues, sleep apnoea, osteoarthritis, etc.).
How can we prevent obesity in children?
• Build early relationship with healthy foods – encourage children to eat a variety of different fruits, vegetables and proteins from an early age.
• Eat healthy foods as a family.
• Encourage eating slowly and only when hungry.
• Limit unhealthy foods in the household.
• Regular physical exercise – beware of the amount of time spent watching TV. More time spent sitting
in front of the screen means less time for physical activity and good sleep.
• Know what your child is eating outside of the home.
• A decrease in saturated fat intake will help.
• A decrease in sugar consumption.
• Focus on reducing daily stress.
A healthy weight is important in maintaining good health!