Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Children's Health Depends On Mums'

A study has recently come out that says a healthy/fit mother is a determinate of her children's fitness and health. See this article and this one.

These days there are so many articles telling you to do this, don't do that, eat this, have this many veg per day, don't have too much xyz, etc...! It can be overwhelming and confusing. I do however think that parents (not just mums) who are active and eat well will have some influence over their children's overall health.

Mummy out for a run!
As a child my parents were both active. They weren't necessarily the run a marathon type of parents but my mom loved to go on walks with our dog and swim in the pool in the summer. My dad was active with soccer. He used to play and then refereed the games. He also enjoyed the occasional hike in the nearby mountains.

I think that both my parents being active helped me to want to be active. I don't however think that their fitness level is the only reason I am active and somewhat healthy nutrition-wise. I have said before that I love the stress relief, etc... (read previous article here) so I don't believe that all children will be active if their parents are and vice versa but I do think it helps.

Last summer we went to Italy on vacation. One early evening we went to the beach. There were many children playing. They were carefree and enjoying the setting sun, the sand, the warm sea, their friends, and whatever games they were playing. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a rather large young boy. Well, to be honest he was probably obese but I am not his doctor so I can only guess. He was sat by himself as when he tried to run and even walk for that matter he couldn't catch his breath, he could barely move. This broke my heart. :( Obviously I know nothing of this boy. I don't know his circumstances but I did see his parents and they were also on the large size. It made me so sad and I decided right there and then that I would encourage my children to get outdoors, play, run, enjoy sport, walk, etc... and try as many healthy foods as they are able so that they won't have to feel left out because of their size.

Wrestling Daddy, always an acceptable form of exercise!
My boys know that I like to go running and that I often go with my friends (my mums running club). They also know that I go to the gym and naturally they are starting to enquire about what I do there. Their interest in my fitness pursuits is great but I don't need my boys to be runners or weight lifters, just healthy.  I make sure we also take them with us on walks in the country-side, walks around the neighbourhood, swimming in the sport centre pool/beach/etc... Fitness can be fun and can include many non-traditional exercises, so hopefully we are giving them the background where they will be able to be active and have fun in their own chosen way.
Long walks in the afternoon.
I am very much looking forward to seeing my boys grow and live a long and healthy life :)

What are you doing to encourage your children's fitness? 

1 comment:

  1. I love this article! Thank you for sharing your meal plan and work out routine.I truly enjoy your page and blog.Keep it up and stay healthy.