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DIRECTOR’S CORNER

From the Director's Desk: – Let's combat childhood obesity together! 

Childhood obesity is a serious and complex health issue that affects millions of children and adolescents in the United States. 

Health problems that were once considered adult problems, like high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol, are now affecting youth on a grand scale. 

This is due to weight gain in young adults caused by behaviors like eating high-calorie, low-nutrient foods and beverages, medication use, lack of physical activity, spending too much time watching television or other screen devices and not getting enough sleep. 

Obesity is also influenced by genetics and a person's environment, which can affect their ability to make healthy choices. 

One of the best strategies to help lower rates of childhood obesity is to improve the eating and exercise habits of the entire family. 

Start by stocking the fridge with healthy snack options like fruit, low-fat yogurt, and veggies with hummus. 

Next, try offering new foods throughout the week. Keep in mind that it takes multiple times exposing children to new food before it's accepted, so don't be discouraged if broccoli isn't a hit the first try. 

If you're a parent or guardian that offers ice cream or candy as a reward for doing a good deed, try offering a more creative award instead. 

And finally, be sure your child gets enough sleep. Research shows that too little sleep may increase the risk of obesity and cause hormonal imbalances that lead to increased appetite. 

To learn more about childhood obesity, visit bit.ly/ChildhoodObesityInfo.

Thanks for stopping by the Director’s Corner, where your health is our priority!