Reducing Child Obesity – Child Development Example

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"Reducing Child Obesity" is an excellent example of a paper on child development. Child obesity has been a big menace to children’ s health both locally and globally whereby approximately one out of three children in the United States is overweight, this exposes the children a greater health complications risks and potential gain in weight in the future (Williams, 2013). Experts have resorted to using a number of settings in order to reduce obesity in children including clinics, schools, daycares, and media campaigns.   Recently, technology has been involved to aid in the reduction of obesity in children for example the use of mobile applications, media campaigns, and health technology. A number of campaigns that aim to promote and increase the physical activity of children have been developed in the United States to help in the reduction of childhood obesity.

Such campaigns use mass communication which helps reduce childhood obesity and they use methods that ensure that the messages disseminated are appropriate for both gender, moreover, they address directly the population with higher rates of child obesity. An example of such a media campaign is the campaign about the sugary drinks named ‘ it starts here campaign’ which was aimed at educating the people about the amount of sugar that is present in the sugary drinks like sodas and other related beverages and the impacts of consuming such sugary drinks on health.

This media campaign was introduced in the Multnomah country and its concepts have since extended in other parts of the country and the world. The limitations of this campaign were that it did not influence significantly the amount of soda that was consumed in the region and it did not provide alternative ways of reducing sugar content already consumed.

This problem can be mitigated by providing alternative solutions to reducing the sugar effect in the body for example through physical exercise. Another media campaign used to reduce obesity is the VERB. This is a campaign that was developed to encourage the children to be physically active (Donato, 2006).   It involved generating messages directed to children between 9 to 13 years of age to motivate them to be physically active. It was supposed to increase knowledge about the kids’ regular participation in the physical exercises.

This campaign was encouraged all regionally and internationally.   The limitation of this campaign is that evidence-based evaluation of the results and standards are difficult to determine therefore it is difficult to determine its effectiveness and influence in the reduction of obesity in children. These limitations were solved by interviewing the kids via phone to determine the effectiveness of the result of the campaign. Health technology has been developed to help in the reduction of weight gain in children. This health technology helps to reduce sedentary behaviors in order to reduce BMI and increase PA (Demers, 2006).

An example of such health technology is the Robinson box which aimed at reducing screen time for children. This technology is meant to reduce the time spent by children in watching TV, videos, or playing video games aimed at reducing obesity by increasing PA. This method is limited because there was no evidence that reducing screen time leads to an increase in the PA. This can be solved through encouraging other methods of reducing weight gain in children like physical activities. Another health technology used to reduce childhood obesity is the use of computer games that requires the users to stand up and move while playing which help in increasing metabolic activity.

These video games increase the physical exercises to children who play them as they are able to enhance their energy consumption leading to weight loss. The limitation of this method is that most female children do not play video games as such, therefore, may not benefit from the program. The method can be enhanced by developing video games that can be used by both genders. In conclusion, child obesity remains a menace to the health of the children even though there have been attempts to inform the public about the various ways of improving children’ s health.

Several ways should be used to help in reducing the health hazards associated with child obesity for example encouraging physical activities among children and practicing healthy eating behaviors (Shelov, Remer, & Hannemann, 2014).   Many parents should take the lead in helping their kids to reduce the effects of obesity since the many methods proposed can only be effective with the intervention of the parents.

References

Demers, M. (2006). Walk for your life!: Restoring neighborhood walkways to enhance community life, improve street safety and reduce obesity. Ridgefield, Conn: Vital Health Pub.

Donato, K.D. (2006). National Health Education Programs to Promote Healthy Healthy Eating and Physical Activity. Nutritional reviews (64) 2 S65-S70

Shelov, S. P., Remer, A. T., & Hannemann, R. E. (2014). Caring for your baby and young child: Birth to age 5. New York City: Bantam.

Williams, J. D. (2013). Advances in communication research to reduce childhood obesity. New York: Springer Verlag.

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