to help Georgia families become healthier.
Stephanie Walsh, a pediatrician, medical director for child
wellness at Childrenís Healthcare of Atlanta, and mother
said, "Success with kids is about behavior. You change
your behavior and your weight will find its place."
should parents focus on to improve their childrenís health?
"Focusing on weight doesnít help children because they
are changing, growing and going through puberty. If you focus
on weight youíre missing whatís important. Focus on
healthy habits," says Walsh. "Set short-term goals
with your kids that are achievable."
suggests four healthy habits:
half your plate veggies and fruits.
active for 60 minutes.
more water and limit sugary drinks.
screen time to one hour.
can tired, busy, parents do get their family active?
"Even if you took your kids out for 15 minutes, it doesnít
have to be an hour all at once," says Walsh. "You
donít have to get in the car and drive to the park and stay
for a whole hour. There isnít time for that for a lot of
parents, there is 15 minutes before dinner or after
minutes for a family walk is a start.
what if they play outside for 30 minutes before homework? It
might not work for your family, but some children might focus
better if they have that time before homework." Walsh
suggests starting where you are and build up to an hour daily.
television, tablets and video games, how do parents manage
"Screen time is anything with a screen," says Walsh.
"The key is to have a limit. In homes where the kids have
limits, the kids have less screen time than the homes where
there are no limits." She adds, "playing active
video games is usually not as active as playing outside, but
Should parents make children join the clean-plate club and eat
all their healthy food first, such as veggies, fruit and
"If you say, ĎYou have to eat all your dinner before
you can have ice cream,í the child may clear his plate and
overeat to have dessert," says Walsh. Parents are role
models in the home, so grownups, eat your healthy food and
encourage, but donít shame children into eating veggies.
Walsh suggests "kids eat a balanced diet over the course
of days, not necessarily at each meal."