Parents of young children lead an unhealthy lifestyle, according to recent research. Despite the notion that parents of toddlers spend their whole lives running after the little ones trying to catch them and keep them out of trouble, they are, in fact, not exercising enough.
The study has shown that parents of toddlers eat less healthily than their childless counterparts. Women with children drink more sugary drinks and eat fattier foods according to scientists and they are less active than women of a similar age who don't have children.
This is partly because they tend to choose the quick, less healthy option when it comes to eating because they simply don't have the time or energy to do any different, and they miss out on exercise because of being too tired, busy or having no childcare.
The research was undertaken at the University of Minnesota and published in the journal Pediatrics. The study was carried out to help identify whether parents of young children are at risk and whether they would benefit from advice on diet, exercise and healthy living.
The study looked at the lives of 1,500 adults aged around 25, many of whom were parents with children under five. On average the mothers consumed nearly 400 calories each day more than their childless counterparts. In order to prevent weight gain they should be exercising even more (walking about 3 miles a day) to counter balance. However, in reality they were exercising less than 2 hours a week at a moderate pace.
There are limitations to the findings:
These are interesting findings and we would welcome more information on how we should look after ourselves after childbirth.
The weather is warmer, the kids want to go out, but what can you do and why bother doing physical activity when you can just stay indoors? It's important to encourage youngsters to get active and get used to the idea of doing physical activity. Here are a few reasons why its important to do activities with children of all ages, because it helps them to:
How much exercise you do depends on you, but the advice is that it should be about an hour a day. Sound a lot? It's not really when you look at what's included:-
How can you help?
So, get outside and have some fun!
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