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A Early Warning Checklist To Fight Childhood Obesity

I posted a blog last week that showed just how little parents are monitoring and limiting the copious amounts of time their children spend in front of the TV, contributing greatly to the epidemic of childhood obesity in this country that has shaved years off previous lifespan forecasts.

Scottish researchers have devised a common-sense checklist to warn parents about the early signs of obesity in their children, all of which certainly make sense to me:

  • *More than 8 hours of TV time a week.
  • Less than 10.5 hours of sleep nightly for the average 3-year-old child.
  • A high birth weight.
  • Rapid weight gain.
  • Early body fat.
  • Obese parents.
  • Quick growth from ages 1-2.
  • Early size.

Because a child's propensity for gaining weight begins early -- even in the womb -- they can develop habits by age 3 ensuring they're likely to be overweight or obese, according to the study of 9,000 children whose progress had been monitored since birth. That's why scientists believe efforts to prevent childhood obesity should begin by modifying lifestyles and environments very early on.

Fortunately, you have a great many free tools available at your fingertips through my Web site to do just that:

British Medical Journal May 20, 2005 Free Full-Text Article

Yahoo News May 20, 2005

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