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Raising Fit Kids: Healthy Nurtition, Exercise, and Weight

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"If your child starts to melt down from too many commitments, there’s nothing to gain by insisting she stick with them all," says Markham. 

If she heads for the junk food and stress-eats when she knows that she has a game, then a party, then a music lesson later today, it may be safe to assume she's dealing with overload in an unhealthy way. Ask her which activities she likes most, and suggest that she stick with just one.

Explain to her, too, that sometimes people eat when they're bored; maybe she just isn't having fun with the activities she's doing. If that's the case, find something for the two of you to do. Have a dance-off in the living room or jump rope in the yard; they're great ways to move, have fun, and feel good.

"Remember that playing is about as stress-free for most children as it can get," says George Scarlett, PhD,  of Tufts University. "That’s because in play, children can take control!"


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