Teens are a time when your kids will be undergoing several physical, psychological and emotional changes. There is also a very deep-rooted need amongst teens to fit in with their peers. This makes them succumb easily to peer pressure when it comes to dressing, eating and spending recreational time.
Unfortunately, a lot of this recreational time is utilized in sedentary activities and consuming huge amounts of junk food. Teenage obesity is fast on the rise even in the so-called developing nations of the world. Combined with late hours, poor quality of sleep and a less than ideal diet, teens are fast becoming overweight. As a parent, there are some small measures that you can take to ensure that your teen stays within the healthy weight limit.
Effective Weight Loss Tips for Teenagers
Regulate Your Teen’s Sleep
A teen’s body is developing rapidly and needs at least 8-10 hours of rest and recoup after a hectic day filled with activities. Many teens succumb to the fad of staying up late in the night, reading, watching TV or playing computer games. This is not acceptable as it plays havoc with his/her body rhythm and also makes the teen gain weight.
Try to incorporate a schedule of regular sleep hours. Ensure that your teen sleeps on time after completing school assignments. There should be no TV watching or computer surfing at night unless absolutely necessary. Getting enough sleep will ensure that your teen remains healthy.
Many teens are in the habit of skipping breakfast and then having a binge fest in the college canteen. The school or college canteen can never compensate for healthy meals prepared at home. Ensure that your teen eats his/her breakfast every morning. Make delicious recipes so that your teen remains attuned and interested in food.
Try a nutritious fruit smoothie, Spanish omelette, whole-wheat pancakes or pasta which all teens would enjoy eating. Allow the teen to eat from the canteen not more than once or twice in a week.
Curtail in Between Snacking
Ban certain junk foods in your house like chips, colas, cakes and cookies. Allow them to be brought into the house only on weekends. This allows your teen to have is/her treat without feeling acutely deprived. Go in for portion control. Let the teen have his/her favourite food but exercise portion control.
Do not allow snacking in front of the TV unless it is something healthy or nutritious. If your teen gets hungry, look up some interesting but healthy snack recipes and whip them up for your teen.
Keep your Teen Busy
A teen who stays at home all day is likely to get obese. He/she may want to spend all free time watching TV, reading or catching up with friends on facebook. During such times, he/she is likely to reach out for burgers or the bag of chips.
Keep your teen busy by involving him/her in the household chores. Ingrain the importance of exercise by setting a good example. Go out with your teen for some much-needed exercise like swimming, tennis or a fun hike on a nature trail.
Watch the Liquid Calories
Food is not the only source of excess calories. Many calories also come from drinking certain liquids like colas, coffee lattes and heavy milk shakes. Monitor the amount of liquids your child is consuming. Summer months are likely to make your teen feel thirsty. Prepare lemonade at home or a jar of iced tea, which is a healthier alternative. You can also give your teen some refreshing coconut water, which is a very healthy drink to have.
Talk to Your Teen In Times of Stress
Hunger strikes when the teen is likely to feel the most stressed out. Make it a habit to talk and engage with your teen especially during times of stress. Eating junk during a stressful time will make your teen gain weight. Do whatever you can to banish stress from your teen’s life.
Some teens become conscious and decide to do something about their weight gain especially when they start facing ridicule from their friends. If you are willing to shed pounds, aim for realistic weight loss.
Try to shed a pound every week through diet control and engaging in a strenuous form of sport. Go for cycling, running, gymming or anything that makes you feel good and helps you to lose weight.
Tune In to Your Hunger Cues
Do not eat mindlessly. Eat only during scheduled meal times or when your body genuinely sends out hunger cues. Eating only when the body demands it ensures that you do not overeat or become fat. Tuning into your hunger signals will help you to achieve mastery over the quality of food you are eating and you will not succumb to senseless binging.
Speak to a Doctor
It is also important to speak to a doctor who can advise you on the best way to lose weight keeping in mind your age and other vital health parameters. Be open to input and different strategies towards losing that weight.
Keep the Company of Physically Fit Friends
Stay with friends who keep you on your toes and are inclined towards sports and other forms of physical exertion. Keeping the company of physically fit people will also inspire you to toe the same line.
You too are likely to stay inclined towards sports and physical fitness. This will allow your weight to stay in a healthy weight range.
Have A Supportive Home Environment
Stay in a home environment that has supportive parents. If you have decided to shed some weight, announce the same to your family. Tell them to keep you motivated. They will also help to overhaul your diet and stay physically fit. Ask a trusted relative to monitor your weight loss goals. This will help you to arrive at your weight loss goals sooner than others.
Set Good Examples
Overweight parents cannot be good role models for teens. If you eat junk and slouch in front of the TV, expect that your teen will do the same. Set good examples and become an exemplary role model by eating sensibly and exercising. In all probability, your teen too will emulate you.