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My Child is Overweight. What Should I Do?

13 June 2023

Parents always want to make sure everything is on point when it comes to their children. One of the most noticeable aspects of a youngster’s growth is his or her weight. While some parents have trouble helping their children gain weight, some also have problems controlling their kids' weight. Read on, as we discuss what you should do if your child is overweight. 

Consult a Doctor

Just like adults, when children are overweight, it can be a sign of an underlying medical condition. This is why the first thing you must do is consult your child’s paediatrician or healthcare worker. The doctor will be able to find out whether the weight gain being experienced by your child is abnormal, or if you simply need to decrease the calories a bit. 

You do not want to start adjusting calories of your child’s diet significantly without medical supervision.You want to do every step with the help of a doctor. The doctor will also be able to check if your child’s environment is optimal. By asking questions and looking at the overall picture, the doctor may advise you to make some changes to your home, lifestyle, feeding patterns, how you conduct play time, and a number of other factors. You also want to check that your child is not affected by any genetic diseases you or your partner could have passed down. 


Once these have been ruled out, the doctor (with the help of a dietitian or nurse) will also be able to instruct you on your little one’s diet. A parent must remember that usually children must be fed the same way, with a healthy wholesome nutritious diet. With medical supervision, make sure you know the different options you can choose from when you want to feed your child. 

Also, as a parent, it is your responsibility to teach your child healthy eating habits. This includes scheduling, the type of foods, eating skills, and even how to communicate their hunger. Children must be fed the right foods, at the right time, the right way. This might mean that you need to supervise their snack times, and not just feed them whenever they ask for food (if they are overweight). 


Of course, exercise is a big factor as well. Children love to move, jump, walk, dance and play. Make sure to incorporate exercise into your child's development. Not only will this develop their motor skills, but it will also help their body to burn calories and utilise nutrients more effectively. 

Finally, the key factor is the quality and amount of food you are feeding your child. Encourage plenty of water and absolutely minimise sugary drinks and snacks.

Photo by Annushka Ahuja

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