What Can You Do About Childhood Obesity?

Although obesity can be prevented, there seems to be a rise in the number of overweight individuals in the world, including children and teenagers. Obesity is defined as the excessive fat accumulation that can impair health or cause several health problems.

Here are the things you need to keep in mind to help stop your child from becoming obese.

Know Your Child’s Ideal Weight
For a growing child, the ideal weight trajectory should be based on the height and weight change proportional to the overall development. A child will be classified as overweight if the weight is above the recommended average for his/her age and height. If the weight is not monitored properly, the child could become obese as an adult and will have a much more difficult time changing bad eating habits later.

Know the Risks for Obesity
Some children are more likely to become overweight than others because of several factors; such as unchecked bad eating habits, genes, lack of physical activity, and consumption of food and drinks high in sodium, sugar, and fat. Parents who encourage unhealthy lifestyle and those parents who are unhealthy themselves, create an obesogenic environment for a child that can be difficult to change. According to various research, majority of the children who were obese were still obese as teenagers and even as adults.

Know the Cause of Weight Gain
Weight gain is the result of more energy taken from food and beverages than the body can burn off through physical activity. A deadly combination usually involves easy access to food high in fat and calories and an environment that discourages or lacks opportunity for physical activities. Only a small percentage of obese children have problems with hereditary diseases that contribute to obesity, so majority of the cases are caused by unhealthy lifestyle.

Know the Results of Obesity
While chubby kids might look cute, there is a risk of developing serious health problems that can plague the child until he/she becomes an adult, such as diabetes, heart problems, asthma, and depression. That is why it’s important to address lifestyle problems as early as possible, beginning with the adults who look after the child.

Know How to Fight Obesity
Children don’t need to go through a strict diet to reduce weight, unlike obese adults. The goal of childhood obesity treatment is to slow weight gain until the child grows into his/her ideal weight. You are not supposed to cut off a child’s supply of fat and carbohydrates, because these are needed for growth and development. However, you have to avoid trans fats and choose saturated fats properly. The same is true for sugar, so instead of a no-sugar diet, limit the child’s sugar options by preparing healthy meals and small snacks. The treatment, however, involves the entire family by exposing the child to healthy food, encouraging physical activities and socialization, and to limit their idle time watching the television or the use of the computer.

What is Gluten Intolerance?

A lot of people think gluten intolerance is just a fad or another newly discovered type of allergy, but this condition is neither of those. Sometimes it is a symptom of celiac disease, but gluten intolerance can also exist outside the disease and even wheat allergy or gluten ataxia, which are all different conditions.

Gluten and Gluten Intolerance
Simply put, gluten intolerance or non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) is the person’s sensitivity to gluten in food such as wheat, rye, barley, oat and triticale. Gluten is the name of the proteins, prolamins and glutelins, found in the food listed and are responsible for maintaining their shape. It is the component that makes the dough elastic or the food chewy. Fortunately, gluten is only found in the food listed above and the related species and hybrids, so it is possible to monitor the person’s diet to avoid the symptoms.

Cause of Gluten Intolerance
There is no known cause for gluten intolerance, although some researchers are trying to look for markers in the genes to determine a treatment. What they found, however, is that it is a distinct condition that is separate from celiac disease, which is an autoimmune condition that makes the body react to gluten as if it is a poison. It was also determined that there are more people who are gluten-intolerant than those diagnosed with celiac disease.

Symptoms of Gluten Intolerance
With celiac disease, the body will try to destroy the part of the small intestines that absorb nutrients, but a person with gluten intolerance will not have the same response. Symptoms of gluten intolerance vary among those with the condition, but signs may include diarrhea or constipation, abdominal pain, cramping and bloating, muscle and joint pains, frequent headache, chronic fatigue, mood changes, skin problems, difficulty concentrating and remembering, and nutrient deficiencies.

Gluten-Free Diet
If you think you have gluten intolerance, you need to talk to your doctor about tests that will rule out other possible conditions such as celiac disease. Remember that celiac disease can cause damage to your intestines, while gluten intolerance does not. While there is there no cure for gluten sensitivity and treatments are limited because the condition is poorly understood, a patient with this condition is advised to practice gluten-free or low-gluten diet. For the next 30 days, you will eliminate gluten from your diet until your condition improves, then the doctor will ask you to reintroduce it and to look for symptoms. If you have adverse reaction to gluten, you will have to avoid food that contain wheat, rye, barley, and other related species and varieties. Remember to read labels carefully, because not all manufacturers indicate that their product is gluten-free.

Know the Different Types of Antidepressant Medication

Some patients prescribed with antidepressants are confused by the effects of the medication on the various symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. How does your doctor find one that’s right for you and why do some patients switch to a different medication?

How Do Antidepressants Work?
Antidepressants are grouped into classes based on how they chemicals work in the body, although some might differ slightly from the others. The role of antidepressants in the treatment is to increase the level of specific neurotransmitters to reduce the symptoms of depression and/or anxiety, because depression at its most basic definition is the imbalance of brain chemicals that control a person’s mood.

Neurotransmitters or brain chemicals are supposed to control the different functions in the brain, and one such neurotransmitter, serotonin, affect the mood of the person.

How Does the Doctor Find the Right Medication?
Deciding which type of treatment will work on you, or if you need medication or not, will depend on each person. Most antidepressants should affect all the patients similarly, but the differences and the severity of the side effects are usually the deciding factors in picking the right medication.

Determining the severity and type of side effects could be trial-and-error process, but doctors usually take into consideration the other medication you’re currently taking, the risk of affecting pregnancy and breastfeeding among female patients, the medication’s effect on a relative of a patient, and other existing health conditions that could change the medication’s effect. The doctor might recommend a combination of antidepressants and other medications to reduce the symptoms.

What are the Types of Antidepressants?
• SSRIs or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are known to generally cause mild or fewer side effects even at high doses. Examples are paroxetine, fluoxetine, and escitalopram.

• SNRIs or serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors include duloxetine, levomilnacipran, and desvenlafaxine.

• MAOIs or monoamine oxidase inhibitors are given if the other types of antidepressants don’t work. However, the person is advised to observe a strict diet because the antidepressant can have negative interactions with food and other medications. These include isocarboxazid, tranylcypromine, and phenelzine.

• Atypical antidepressants are called as such, because they do not fit into the other antidepressant categories. These include bupropion, vortioxetine, vilazodone, trazodone, and mirtazapine.

• Tricyclic antidepressants are known to cause a lot of side effects, but they are given to the patient of the other antidepressants do not improve the symptoms. These include imipramine, amitriptyline, desipramine, doxepin, and nortriptyline.

What are the Side Effects of Antidepressants?
All medications have side effects, including antidepressants, but some can be unpleasant for others, that is why the doctor might switch your antidepressant for another class. Fortunately, most side effects are short-term and harmless, and will usually go away after several weeks. These include nausea, diarrhea, weight gain, and sleep problems. Some classes are known to have nasty effects, that is why if you’re taking an antidepressant, monitor changes in your sleep, appetite, weight, and sexual function.

6 Simple Things You Can Do Every Day to Detox Your Body

While some people recommend a week-long detoxification or regular long-term cleansing, it’s actually easy to perform daily practices that will help your body get rid of toxins. Here are six simple things you can do every day to encourage your body to detoxify.

1. Start Your Day with Water—and Lemon
Kickstart your body’s detoxification process by drinking a glass of water with a fresh squeeze of lemon juice when you wake-up in the morning. the lemon juice helps re-hydrate your body from hours of sleep and speeds up your digestion, which helps accelerate the flow of toxins out of your system.

2. Drink Lots of Tea
Not only it is loaded with antioxidants, but teas hydrate you and fill you up. This means you’ll less likely be craving and overeating the wrong foods. If the caffeine content is what bothers you, remember that the caffeine in teas is much gentler than in coffees. It’s a quick pick-me-up sans the jitters.

3. Have More Fruits and Vegetables
This may sound cliché, but fruits and veggies will give you nothing but goodness for your overall health. Most of them are rich in fiber, which helps your digestion, and are low in calories, so you won’t feel guilty consuming a lot of them.

4. Dry Brush your Skin
The skin is the largest organ of the human body, and part of its functions is waste elimination. Dry brushing your skin is an easy and effective way to detoxify your system. It improves the look of your skin by eliminating dirt and dead skin cells and also stimulates blood circulation, which enhances toxin elimination.

5. Minimize Sugar Intake
To boost your body’s detoxification, lower the amount of your sugar intake in a day. Avoid sweet beverages and foods with sweeteners that seem healthy like calorie-free sweeteners, molasses and even honey.

6. Sweat It Out
If you can’t handle weights or any strenuous activity, sweat out in a sauna. But if you crave for adrenaline and want to get your heart pumping, go run on a treadmill or lift some weight in the gym. Nothing is more detoxifying than sweating it all out.

Part of living healthy is about finding joy in living in it. Going to extremes in fitness, diet or detoxification strip us off of the fun and healthy life we’re aiming for. So if you want to cleanse your body, start by doing healthier choices and let your body do what it is designed to do.

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