In Canada over 26% of children and youth (1 in 4) are considered overweight or obese. And obesity in childhood often leads to obesity in adulthood.
A sign of childhood obesity is a weight well above the average for a child's height and age. Overweight and obesity problems in childhood are best handled by developing healthy habits that help the child "grow out of it". As a parent, you can establish a healthy lifestyle habit from "Day 1", of if your child's weight is not healthy – take steps to change this.
Why should I be concerned about childhood obesity?
For obese children the chance of leading a long and healthy life is seriously threatened.
In the young, obesity and overweight are associated with physical conditions such as joint problems and difficulty in breathing while asleep (sleep apnea), and emotional-social conditions such as low self esteem and social isolation.
Obese teenagers almost always become obese adults. In adulthood obesity and overweight can often lead to serious illness and premature death.
Sip Smart!BCTM is a fun and effective educational program to help teachers help students in grades 4, 5 and 6 to learn about sugary drinks and make healthy drink choices. First released in 2009, the popular program for teachers is being re-released in fall 2016 by the BC Pediatric Society.
Two Sip Smart!BCTM resources were developed for families as an integral part of the program because of the important role they play in choices their children make about drinks. Click here to read about sugary drinks and here to view the resources for families:
- Factsheet (English, French, Punjabi, Chinese, Hindi, Vietnamese, Filipino, Korean, Persian, Spanish)
- 20-page Booklet (Chinese, English, French, Chinese, Punjabi)