Obese Kids on Diet

Obese Kids on Diet

Some kids need to lose those extra pounds. If this sounds like your child, then read on to find some help. There is a study that shows what type of diet kids prefer that can help in their weight loss efforts.

Which diet is the best?

In the study, there were 3 types of diet, but the kids like the one which has a food combination that do not cause imbalances in blood sugar levels. Although using the two other diets helped the kids to lose weight as well.

Shelley Kirk, an assistant professor from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine commented that the 3 types of diet employed were found effective for losing weight. The only problem is knowing how to make the kids stick to it.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics tell us that there are approximately 20 percent of American kids who are 6 to 11 years old classified as obese. The same percentage of American adolescents who are 12 to 19 years old are also obese.

Study Methodology

In the study, 85 obese kids who are 7 to 12 years old were assigned a particular diet for one year. The participants each had a dietary counseling every week and exercise sessions twice a week during the first 3 months. For the rest of the year, they were allowed to do things on their own.

In the first diet, the assigned kids had very low carb consumption with lots of high protein foods, which is like the Atkins diet for adults. The second diet included low glycemic index foods, such as non-starchy vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fish and poultry. This diet keeps blood-sugar levels of the kids in balance. The third diet was strict in controlling food portions and calorie distribution. The calories must be 55 to 60 percent from carbohydrates, 10 to 15 percent from protein and 30 percent from fat.

Study Results

The researchers monitored the participants’ body mass index or BMI. BMI measures the percentage of body fat a person has based on his weight and height. The study results showed a decrease in the participants’ BMI. There were no changes in waist sizes in a year’s time, but it may be because they grew.

According to Professor Kirk, it was easiest for the children to follow the low-glycemic index diet and most difficult for them to follow the low-carb diet.

But almost all of the kids shed some pounds whatever diet they were following.

Why the Diets Differ in Popularity Among the Kids

Nutritionist-Dietitian Cathleen Davis from the Babylon, New York’s Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center gave an explanation as to why the children had a different preference for the diet.

The primary reason she mentioned was the familiarity of the parents with the portion-controlled diet and the low-glycemic index diet. The children liked both better because they are most probably comfortable with these diets which the parents already implement at home.

Tips When Putting a Kid on a Diet

Get Expert Advice

It is recommended to talk to a pediatrician regarding local diet programs. It would be possible to find a local registered dietitian using the Eatright.org website.

Go Slow

Don’t expect that the diet program will go smoothly. Implement changes little by little.

Be Careful of Supplements

Don’t just give your kids any type of supplement that makes big promises. Check the product’s license and consumer reviews.

Photo credits: Image by Robin Corps via Flickr, CC by-SA 2.0

Categories: Diet, Nutrition, Weight Loss

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