“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)
In last week’s article I introduced the idea of B.I.M. (Body Information Markers) which you can use to help you assess your own Health or that of your children. As a diabetic, you are used to self-measurement, but these are new tools, and they work for everyone!
So, here are some new B.I.M.s and the link to last week’s article is below.
___ Neck circumference has been explored in studies as a B.I.M. for potential obesity and heart problems in adults and the information below also applies to children.
One of Body Mass Index’s (the usual method) shortcomings is that it “does not accurately define central body fatness,” said Dr. Nafiu (an assistant professor of pediatric anesthesia at the University of Michigan School of Medicine Health, Ann Arbor).
Neck circumference could give better clues to actual body fat composition.
Additionally, Dr. Olubukola Nafiu and his colleagues examined 1,102 children and recorded their heights, weights and neck circumferences to determine whether this measurement could be another way to assess obesity in children. It can.
At the link below, you can get relevant charts for neck circumference guidelines. Help you and your child by referring to them often.
The doctors measured necks using a flexible tape at the most prominent part of the neck for young children. For older males, that area was around the Adam’s apple level (larynx bump, in the front of the neck).
But common sense also indicates the connection between a large, fatty neck circumference and ill health.
It was particularly poignant to see this research as in a recent week’s “Losing It With Jillian”, trainer Jillian Michael’s intervened to save the health of a Miami 9 year old, who was already pre-diabetic and almost at full-blown Type 2 diabetes, which is at epidemic levels among juveniles.
___ David Alvarez, Jr. was a miniature, thick-necked version of his severely overweight father and somewhat overweight Mom. He was already having to monitor blood sugar, and the terrible thing about juveniles who are getting Type 2 diabetes is that food can either create or obliterate the condition!
If a family will choose healthy foods and use it and exercise to get the weight off, then you are on your way back to Health. But, children are at the mercy of their parent’s ignorance or lack of concern or both.
Children don’t buy or prepare the food they eat; adults do that, and it is up to the adults to validate and encourage healthy exercise and other healthy habits.
Jillian courageously told the Alvarez family that they were causing their son’s ill health.
So, Jillian showed them how to eat better and exercise properly and efficiently and choose time to have fun together. By the time 6 weeks had gone by, little David had lost 25 pounds and he was most of the way to becoming a normal-sized kid again.
He was no longer being taunted; he had a new lease on life, as he wanted to make sure his new friends stayed healthy or the ones who needed help learned what he had. Talk about paying it forward!
Jillian supported little David’s after school program so he could continue to help the other kids learn how to live a healthy life. Brava! and Bravo!
___ And, you need a test like the neck B.I.M. above to help gauge your children’s weight well being, as the usual growth charts (which are based on BMI) may not tell the whole story, yet another article suggests. However, the medical profession does consider Body Mass Index a B.I.M. and uses it in all childhood assessment of weight.
And, importantly, the article says it seems that the vast majority of pediatricians are NOT willing to discuss or intervene in juvenile weight control — I just couldn’t believe what I was reading!
___ More than 20 years ago, the alarm bell rang on the childhood obesity epidemic. Now, 17% of American children and adolescents are officially “obese“, triple the rate in 1980.
And nearly 33% more children are also now considered “overweight“, according to the latest government data.
Importantly and shockingly, in a 2006 study surveying the parents of the obese children, one-half of those parents did NOT recognize that their child was even overweight (some studies show it as high as 90%).
Less than one-third of parents said they were “worried” about their child’s weight!
In another survey, only 38% of parents had taken steps, or were planning to take them, to help their obese child lose weight.
Parents should be concerned, because although some overweight kids do outgrow their baby fat, roughly two out of three are likely to grow up to be obese adults! And along with that sentence comes a slew of serious health problems, including: diabetes, asthma, heart disease and depression. Who would wish that on their child!
The failure of parents to accurately assess their child’s weight is also partly due to changing social norms — not only are kids heavier than ever before, but roughly 2/3 of adults are also overweight.
Parents who are overweight themselves are less likely to identify their children as overweight and similarly, some studies suggest that parents of various ethnicities and cultural backgrounds have different conceptions of body type and overweight.
___ BMI might be a better B.I.M. if it was looked at with a CRITICAL eye. Be aware that steadiness in the relationship between weight and height on the graph are crucial.
Dr. Samuel Gidding, MD says studies show that there is a serious concern when lots of weight comes on rapidly, at any time. If so, regard that as a possible problem showing up in metabolism or biochemistry.
Use Body Mass Index (BMI) as a signal to monitor your child, consult a pediatrician who is active and aware, and double your effort to give your child proper amounts of only healthy foods.
Monitor your children from birth. Use the charts below and the neck circumference charts already mentioned (link in Reference section below).
And, as children get older, parents should teach them about:
___ appropriate portion sizes
___ healthy eating habits (such as sticking to regular meal times)
___ and the importance of being active.
Here’s your access to the scientific basis for a healthy child’s growth assessment and normal weight to height ratios — by gender.
Diabetic Body Information Genes, Bellies and More – Part 1
Best to all — Em
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