Child Obesity Increasing During Summer Than During School Days? What Parents Should Do To Avoid This
Summer is the time that children are expected to be out and about getting into different activities but a new report claims that it is also the time that most children gain weight. As opposed to the time that school children are in their classes, child obesity is more evident when they are out of school.
Christian Science Monitor reported that the study was published on Wednesday in the journal called Obesity. As per the study, they did not see an increase in the percentage of overweight or obese students during the school year but found that students gained weight faster over the summer vacation.
It is believed that the increase in the percentage of obesity over the summer is due to the fact that children are no longer that active as opposed to in recent years. Children in the past would go camping, play outside, swimming and do other activities.
Children nowadays, however, spend their summer watching TV or playing on the computers or other gadgets. Children are also given less nutritious snacks during the summer but when they are in school, healthier foods are served.
Through the project of First Lady Michelle Obama, identified as Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA), children should have better meals, spend more time having physical education, and be served less sugary and salty snacks. However, it is not enough that the students experience all these while in school. The researchers of the study advise that students should be taught to make choices that they can also do at home, Hindustan Times reported.
Paul von Hippel, the lead author and an associate professor of public affairs at the University of Texas at Austin shared in the study, "To implement school-based reform, we really have to think about the impact it will have on out-of-school based behavior."
The study included 18,170 kindergarten students. They were monitored since 2010 and their Body Mass Index was recorded. These students were weighed once in the fall and once in the spring. The period covered in the study was three school years and two summers.
The percentage of obesity increased from 8.9 percent to 11.5 percent while the commonness of overweight students increased from 23.3 percent to 28.7 percent. It was also found out that children living in less cooler areas were not as active.