Total Shape, a leading health and fitness resource website, did a survey that found 15% of American children living on the East Coast states gained more than 10 pounds during three months of lockdown. New Jersey, Massachusetts, and New York had the highest average weight gain, while Vermont, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island had the lowest.
According to the U.K.'s Daily Mail, children on the East Coast gained an average of 7 pounds since the lockdown closed most schools in March. Most of the 5,000 parents interviewed for the survey admitted their children's weight gain was due to more snacking and less exercising.
Total Shape said parents should set aside exercise and play time as part of the daily routine. It is best when the whole family participate in physical activities, according to the Daily Mail.
They should also establish a set meal plan so that kids will be hungry at specific times and pack each meal with enough nutrition to prevent snacking. Experts said children should be served fruits and veggies daily and eat leafy greens at least once a week.
According to the President's Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition, only one in three children is active every day and children now spend more than seven and a half hours daily in from of a screen such as a TV, videogame, or computer.
According to the Daily Mail, 18.5% of U.S. children and adolescents were overweight or obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — a rate that has doubled for children and tripled for adolescents in the past decade.
Not only are overweight children more likely to grow up to be obese adults, they are also at risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic disease associated with excess weight. Tyler Sellers, a coach at Total Shape said it was "quite alarming to see that the majority of parents surveyed are concerned about their child's recent weight gain."
But, he added, "It's amazing how just a few changes to a daily routine can have a big impact on fitness levels and wellbeing for the whole family."
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