Albany Med Pediatricians Help Parents Tackle Childhood Obesity
September 27, 2012 - Albany , NY
ALBANY, N.Y., September 27, 2012-The percentage of overweight children in the United States is growing at an alarming rate, with one out of three children now considered overweight or obese.
Albany Med's Abigail Watson, M.D., an expert in obesity management for pediatric patients; and Jennifer Lindstrom, M.D., medical director of bariatrics and clinical nutrition, will discuss how to help children get active, eat healthy and make smart choices at Feed Me Right!, a free seminar from 5-7pm Tuesday, October 2, at the New York State Nurses Association, 11 Cornell Rd., Latham.
According to Dr. Watson, parents should realize that childhood obesity is more than a cosmetic problem, it is dangerous. She said it puts children at risk for Type II diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease and arthritis.
"We need to help children begin to lead healthy lifestyles. Introducing a strict diet may be helpful temporarily, but children need to learn ways to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight throughout their lives," said Dr. Watson. The effort almost always requires that the whole family makes changes because it is much easier for children to maintain a healthy weight if the family is supportive and doing the same.
Some of the measures the doctors recommend include:
* Limiting junk food and eliminate juice and soda.
* Allowing no more than two hours of TV and video game time per day.
* Encouraging physical activity. Children need one hour of moderately vigorous physical activity every day. This doesn't necessarily mean an hour on the treadmill, but includes active outdoor play, walking to and from the mailbox and helping with household chores. The activity can be broken up into 10-minute increments.
* Including a fruit or vegetable with every meal, leaving less room for foods that cause weight gain.
* Making snacks of fruit or vegetables, or a protein such as a small handful of nuts, or a small portion of cottage cheese or Greek yogurt.
The seminar is presented by Albany Medical Center and the Times Union as part of the HealthyLife seminar series. Seating is limited. To register, visit www.timesunion.com/healthylife or call 518-454-5583.
Albany Medical Center, northeastern New York's only academic health sciences center, is one of the largest private employers in the Capital Region. It incorporates the 651-bed Albany Medical Center Hospital, which offers the widest range of medical and surgical services in the region, and the Albany Medical College, which trains the next generation of doctors, scientists and other healthcare professionals, and also includes a biomedical research enterprise and the region's largest physicians practice with 350 doctors. Albany Medical Center works with dozens of community partners to improve the region's health and quality of life. For more information: www.amc.edu or www.facebook.com/albanymedicalcenter.
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