Childhood obesity rates are increasing at an alarming rate and studies are linking obesity to the leading causes of premature death including cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes. As Pediatricians, our voices matter when it comes to influencing change in the behaviors of our patients, their families and our communities. It is time to address childhood obesity as leaders in childrens health.
It is hard to manage all that we do in a busy clinic day and still have the time to discuss the complicated psychosocial and environmental health issue of childhood obesity. However, here are a few tips and tools from the evidence based Lets go 5-2-1-0 Intiiative that you can use in your office setting:
- Display Let's go! posters in your office waiting area and exam rooms
- Identify and discuss BMI of all patients greater than 2 years of age or older
- Counsel families on healthy eating and active living utilizing 5-2-1-0 messaging tools
- Use the 5-2-10 health assessment questionnaires to help identify areas that your families are interested in changing
Using the 5-2-10 message is simple, yet allows us to discuss a very difficult and serious problem of how an unhealthy weight affects the health of our children, and can lead to serious diseases such as Diabetes, cardiovascular disease, poor self esteem, cancer, sleep issues and many other problems.
Toolkits and other tips can be found on http://www.letsgo.org