If you are concerned about kids fitness, you may want to take a closer look at a recent study that suggests a link between dieting at an early age and later health issues for girls. Researchers suggest intervening as early as elementary school, and exercise is an essential part of the program.
The younger a woman is when she starts dieting, the greater her future risk for several serious health outcomes. Early dieting was associated with bulimia and other eating disorders. Women who dieted young were also more prone to abusing alcohol and experiencing obesity by the time they reached their 30s.
The study was conducted by Dr. Pamela Keel of Florida State University and presented at the at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. They surveyed college age women about their dieting and weight history and followed up with them for 10 years.
The research team made several suggestions including exercise. Limit the time kids spend on sedentary activities like watching TV or posting on Facebook. Make sure your whole family eats healthy. That means filling at least half your plate with fruits and vegetables. Select lean proteins and healthy fats. Cut down on soda and junk food. Your kids will learn from your example.
When it comes to exercise, we can help. A family gym membership is a great way to make physical activity a central part of your daily routine. In addition to managing weight, physical exercise can have a powerful impact on building self-confidence and a positive image. That is especially important for young girls coping with the natural changes in growth and body fat that accompany reaching puberty.
Contact us to learn more about our family and kids fitness programs. We offer everything from karate and gymnastics to birthday parties and camps.