Source: Intent - In a highly demanding stress-filled world your children are battered by academic, social and enrichment demands. Grade-schoolers are already working on their college resumes. At the same time the media erodes self-esteem with images of idealized physical appearance and instills them with insatiable material appetites. As parents, you try to comfort them with the latest gadgets, clothes, in short, anything that inspires confidence and helps them compete. Is it working? When you look at children’s waist lines, you see the correlation between obesity and self-soothing these stressors with addictive fatty, sugary/salty foods like the song lyrics, feeding a hungry heart.
The story begins with you. Whatever you do, a child is watching. If you have self-esteem and demonstrate it with calm-assertiveness when obstacles come your way, then your child will imitate you. If you say no to people who rob you of your time and peace of mind, then your child will do the same. If you separate who you are from what you do, which means if you fail to achieve, you can redirect and improve, then your child will learn from failures. Minimize your stress levels to maximize their happiness.
In your innate need to protect your children and keep them happy, many parents give them a false sense of confidence. “You can do it!” “Never give up!” “It’s the teacher, not you!” “Those kids are mean. You don’t need them.” “Here, I’ll write your term paper for you because you are so busy.” While it is important to advocate for children, you have to be careful not to trespass into their world. Struggling, falling down, and failing are all necessary components for adaptation. Show them how to play to their strengths. When your children cannot adapt, they eat to feel better – just like you to weather the tough times of emotional famine.
To counteract childhood obesity which leads to obese adults, you need to answer the following questions:Who is your child feeding?
*An angry person who feeds off her anger?
*A rebellious teenager who feels the world owes him?
*A child who does not feel nourished with unconditional love?
The family stimulus package
*Exercise: Children need to be active to relieve stress hormones and sharpen learning ability which improves by 20% after exercise. Exercise strengthens both the body and the mind. Walk with children to destinations. Human beings were meant to walk and run outdoors.
*Healthy eating: If you want children to think highly of themselves, make sure that they eat quality foods, not junk. Food and mood are connected. A rainbow array of fruits and vegetables create sunny dispositions. Lean proteins promote academic success. Whole grains help manage mood.
*Creative hobbies: Nothing boosts self-esteem like developing a creative hobby. It fills an empty heart. Through creativity children can tangibly identify their uniqueness. “Look what I did.”
*Carving out quiet time: Children are overscheduled. They need private time to explore. You don’t have to constantly amuse them when they say, “I’m bored.”
*Give them responsibilities and chores: Even if you have a housekeeper, children need to do chores. Contributing to the household gives them structure and accountability - personal pride. Small children can help set the table or pick up their toys.
*Humor: Show children how to reinterpret those “little disasters” with a comic eye. Children who have a sense of humor are magnets for positive social relationships. Belly laughs make one feel satiated.