An overweight woman is putting her child’s health at risk! This simple fact should help motivate women to lose weight.
Women in America are more overweight than ever. But even more disturbing, their children are too. In fact, according to the CDC, this generation of children will be the first to die younger than its parents. It is not just mom’s health at risk. Women are usually shocked to learn that a child with two normal-weight parents has a 7% risk of being overweight. If one parent is overweight, the risk jumps to 40%. And a child with two overweight parents has an 80% risk of being overweight.
Moms can significantly lower their children’s risks of obesity by losing weight themselves! Children model their parent’s behaviors. Every mother knows that nothing is more attractive to a child than what is on mom’s plate! A child who sees that mom doesn’t value eating a healthy diet will learn to eat junk. On the other hand, when a child sees mom enjoying healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables, he will want to eat those foods too.
My own children taught me this lesson last summer! I was sitting in my kitchen with a mango. But not just any mango- a perfectly ripe, juicy mango. “What a treat,” I exclaimed as the juice ran down my face. “This is really the best.” The next thing I know, my kids had jumped onto my lap, begging to try it. Truthfully, I didn’t want to share- it was that good! But I gave them some and thus began my kids’ love affair with mango. It all has to do with how you react to the food yourself! Now, when I sit down with a new healthy food, I make sure to let my children watch me enjoy it. More often than not, it prompts them to want to try it too.
The same goes for exercise. Children of mothers who exercise are significantly more likely to enjoy exercise themselves. If moms don’t exercise or exercise begrudgingly, kids learn that exercise is a chore. But if kids see their mothers looking forward to working out, they want to join in too. My kids are thrilled when I let them join me on a morning run or an afternoon bike ride!
Mothers always want what is best for their children. We need to remember that our weight directly influences our children’s weights. It is not selfish for a mother to take an hour a day to exercise. In fact, in a sense it is selfish not to! Reminding mothers that they must lose weight to help their children is often all the incentive they need to begin, and continue, their weight loss journeys.
Tags: child diet, Child Obesity, child weight gain, diet, exercise, mothers, obese baby, obese child, obese toddler, obesity, overweight child, overweight mother, overweight parent, overweight toddler, overweight woman, parenting, weight gain, weight loss