Childhood Obesity: Your Kids And Heart Disease!

February 5, 2007 by  
Filed under OBESITY

by: Ray Kelly

Shockingly, it is estimated that 22 million of the world’s children under 5 are overweight or obese and approximately one in four American children are overweight. The problem this presents is that these children are more susceptible to pediatric hypertension, type II diabetes, greater risk of heart disease, the extra burden of weight on joints, not to mention, the social effects with peers. The medical community has already indicated a surge in childhood diabetes and of the children diagnosed with Type II diabetes, 85% are obese.

Childhood obesity can be caused by a combination of many factors, but certainly two of the biggest contributors are lack of exercise and poor dietary habits.

Today’s youth spend several hours a day in front of televisions and computers. These activities, along with the lack of physical exercise programs at school, are not providing the energy the body requires to burn off calorie intake. Plus, energy levels continue to decline as additional weight is gained, inhibiting the desire to spend the recommended 30 minutes of daily exercise (in addition to what the child may receive during school). The benefits to physical exercise are extremely important though as it will reduce the risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, along with reducing or maintaining body weight. Additional benefits include, building healthy muscles, bones and joints and improving depression and over all psychological well-being.

Dietary habits contribute to obesity as well and have changed greatly over time. Due to the busy lifestyles of two income households, the demand for quick and easy microwaveable food, fast food and snack foods have increased drastically. Also, many children are substituting soda and vending machine snacks for school lunches. Unfortunately, most of these types of foods are high in salt, sugar, fat or calories and have low nutrient content.

Bottom line, children look for role models. If they see the adults around them exercising regularly and eating a balanced diet, they will be more apt to do those things as well. Fun family activities could include a walk, a bike ride, playing at the playground and shooting hoops on the basketball court.

A final note, if your child is overweight, consult your doctor. Rare hormonal disorders and/or other medical conditions can be diagnosed with blood tests and medical exams.

About The Author

Ray Kelly is an Exercise Scientist with 15 years experience in the health and fitness industry. Find out more about childhood obesity at www.free-online-health.com or www.trainingdiary.ws

Women’s Health and Fitness – Reducing Cortisol Levels Can Help You To Lose Weight

December 22, 2006 by  
Filed under OBESITY

By Gill Webster

It is now known that stress can actually stop you losing weight especially around your middle. Stress can cause your body to secrete high levels of cortisol hormone into your bloodstream, because of your body’s “flight or fight” response to stress. Stress can be either psychological (mental and emotional) or physical.

Cortisol is secreted by the adrenal glands and is actually important for the regulation of blood pressure, the immune system and many other functions. Cortisol can be good in small amounts but high levels can lead to an increase of abdominal fat, which can lead to heart attacks, strokes and can also increase your bad cholesterol levels and decrease your good cholesterol levels.

High levels of cortisol can also decrease your bone density, leading to osteoporosis and loss of muscle tissue, which will also slow down your metabolic rate, and it can also increase your blood pressure along with other problems.

Each of you will react differently to stress; some of you will produce more cortisol to a particular stress while others will produce less. It has been found that those of you that produce more cortisol will actually eat more food as well, in particular carbohydrates.

What you need to do to combat producing too much cortisol is to learn ways to relax and also to maybe change your lifestyle.

Relaxation can be achieved in a number of ways either by exercising, mediation, yoga or breathing to start with.

Maybe one of the easiest and simplest ways is breathing. This is done by gently breathing in through the nose, gently expanding your abdomen and then gently expelling the air through your nose pulling in your abdomen at the same time. Whilst breathing out the air you need to focus on that breath. After several breaths in and out you should start to feel yourself relax. You need to practice doing this exercise a few minutes a day to start with building up to five minutes in the end. You can also practice this when you are feeling stressed or when things are getting on top of you. Just a few minutes can slow your body down and help it to feel relax.

Life style changes can be like changing your eating habits for a healthier diet, getting enough sleep, or even organizing your time more efficiently so that you do not feel so stressed. Also looking after your body will help your body to cope with stresses that you come across during your day.

So if you are exercising frequently and eating properly but still not losing any weight especially from around the middle then maybe you are suffering from high levels of cortisol caused by stress. Look at ways to solve the problem and hopefully then you should see a difference in your weight and around your middle.

Gill Webster is dedicated to helping women over 40, learn how to live a healthy beautiful life. To learn more, jump to www.feelinggreatafter40.com and sign up for her free newsletter on health and fitness.

Article Source: EzineArticles.com/?expert=Gill_Webster

Related Posts with Thumbnails

NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.