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My grandparents, who live in a very small town, don't like to come to see me in town. They say that wandering between cars, surrounding yourself with people in a hurry and walking in crowds does not have to be good for anything ... And how wise older people are always! A recent study has confirmed part of his hypothesis: living in the city increases the risk of obesity in children due to air pollution.
Childhood obesity is one of the most worrisome diseases of the moment and has a lot to do with the habits we instill in our children and the rhythm of life to which we subject them. But how does the environment in which we live affect them?
A study conducted at the University of Southern California has concluded that early exposure, before the first year of life, to Air pollution increases the risk of childhood obesity. The main focus is on pollution caused by nitrogen dioxide, produced largely by engines that use diesel as fuel.
To reach this conclusion, more than 2,000 children were followed in Southern California. At 10 years old, the little ones who had been exposed as babies to high contamination they weighed one kilo more on average than those who had lived in areas with cleaner air. In this way, it is suggested that air pollution can affect weight gain in children, which with time and bad habits can end up leading to obesity. In this research, in addition, other factors such as gender, ethnicity, parents' education, etc. were taken into account.
Although this study has not found the causes behind this increased risk of obesity, Jennifer Kim, who led the investigations, has explained that the key is in the brain, in how it regulates appetite and changes in metabolism.
The scientists in this study warn of the danger of babies spending a lot of time along large roads with lots of cars. During the first months of life, babies continue to develop systems as important as the immune system, so it seems that being exposed to high levels of contamination it can affect your present and future health.
Since changing the place of residence is sometimes very complicated for some families, a series of habits must be taken into account that allow to fight against childhood obesity. The World Health Organization (WHO) considers this disease as "one of the most serious public health problems of the 21st century." And it is that suffering from it during childhood increases the risk of suffering from diabetes, osteoarthritis, cardiovascular problems and even certain types of cancer during adulthood.
The key to overcoming overweight in children, which can lead to obesity, is to change their lifestyle. Hence, the support and help of parents is essential for children to live in a healthier way. One of the main reasons why children gain weight is due to the imbalance between the calories that are ingested and those that are expended. Therefore, it is necessary monitor children's feeding and physical activities performing.
1. Avoid foods with saturated fat
A varied and healthy diet helps the physical and intellectual development of children. The foods that we offer you must provide you with all the nutrients you need: carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, fats ... We must limit the consumption of saturated fats and sugars.
2. Beware of sugary sodas
Children tend to like soft drinks a lot, but you have to control their intake because their sugar content is very high. Instead of these drinks, we can offer children fresh juices or water.
3. Sign your child up for a sport
According to the WHO, children between the ages of 5 and 17 need at least 60 minutes of physical activity a day. It is not necessary that the intensity of this sport is very high, many times it is enough with its games in the park and at home. However, there are other children who need a bit of encouragement to quit video games and get off the couch. Enroll your child in extracurricular activities related to a sport is a very healthy and fun idea.
4. Introduce small gestures that will change your life
In health, small gestures also count. We propose small changes in your routines that will allow both you and your child to feel better. Instead of using the elevator, walk up the stairs from home; within your means, walk to school; Instead of a bun, offer him a piece of fruit for recess; cook as a family so that your child understands what he is eating; etc.
5. Visit the pediatrician with your child
If your child is overweight or obese, you should take him to the pediatrician's office. Many times we parents feel capable of solving all the problems of our child. However, the opinion and study of a health expert is essential in these cases.
You can read more articles similar to Living in the city increases the risk of obesity in children, in the Obesity category on site.