How To Prevent Infant Obesity?
In the United States, 17% of children and teenagers between the ages of 2 and 19 are obese. Childhood obesity have attained the proportions of an epidemic. 1 out of 5 children in America is overweight. In fact,
infant obesity is often a precursor to childhood and adult obesity. Several studies have established the fact that rapid weight gain during the first two years of life can indeed contribute to the risks of being obese throughout life.
Obesity is linked with a lot of other morbid conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer etc. It is important to take up measures to avoid excessive weight gain during infancy in order to avoid complications later on.
How to avoid Infant Obesity?
A lot of precautions can be taken by the expecting mom to prevent the baby from being overweight. Maternal weight before the birth of the baby can be a factor. A lot of studies have revealed that babies born from obese and overweight moms have greater risks of being obese later on. Untreated gestational diabetes also puts the baby in the high risk category for weight gain and Type 2 diabetes. Smoking and drinking during pregnancy can also increase the risks of obesity for the baby.
Breast feeding infants can bring down the risks of obesity and type 2 diabetes for infants. Breast fed babies eat only till they are full due to the perceived limitation in the supply. It is more labor intensive to suck from the breast. Formula fed babies eat more than necessary. Besides formula has more sugar and is fortified with proteins. So formula fed babies have a rapid weight gain than breast fed babies.
Food cannot be the answer to every brawling and crying:
It is important to analyse why the baby is crying in between feeds. It is not essential that the infant cries only when he is hungry. He may cry when he is uncomfortable, lonely or needs a diaper change. Newbie moms who tend to pacify babies with food all the time can be unknowingly making the baby get used to over eating.
Do not force feed the baby:
Force feeding the baby may establish an overeating tendency in the baby for life . Ask the baby’s physician as to how much food is right for the baby. It is okay to allow unfinished feeds.Try feeding smaller meals at regular intervals.
Avoid weaning early:
Introducing solid foods early too can result in rapid weight gain. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has been promoting breast feeding at least up to the age of six months. The baby’s nutritional requirements do not require the introduction of solids before that.
It is important to keep the baby away from sugars. This might help him stay away from sugary foods later on. It can instill a healthy eating habit for life and can also combat
in the process.