As with Adults, No Easy Way to Address Weight with Children

Steve Ruark / AP file

NEW YORK (AP) – There is no easy answer for achieving a healthy weight, regardless of age.

The company formerly known as Weight Watchers was criticized when it introduced a food tracking app for children as young as 8. The app, which uses a well-known traffic-light system to classify foods, sparked a debate about how to approach weight loss for children.

Obesity leads to an increased risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes and is a growing problem. But figuring out how to get children to eat well and exercise is extremely difficult – and sensitive.

When it comes to addressing the topic with children, pediatricians and dietitians say there are best practices to consider. For example, any adjustments to meals and activities should involve the entire family, so children don’t feel singled out.

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