Raising Fit Kids: Healthy Weight

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Do pedometers help keep kids at a healthy weight?

ANSWER

It doesn’t do a lot of good to demand that your child exercise. Instead, inspire the whole family to move more.

One trick: Give each family member a pedometer or activity tracker. Once a kid starts to track how many steps he's taking, it's pretty natural to want to take more. At the end of the day, everyone can compare their numbers and chart their progress. Some smartphone apps for kids, like Move2Draw, turn activity tracking into a game, which can make it even more fun for them.

SOURCES:

Lawrence Cheskin, MD, associate professor, Johns Hopkins Medical School; director, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

William H. Dietz, MD, PhD, director, division of nutrition, physical activity, and obesity, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta.

Karen Donato, SM, coordinator, overweight and obesity research applications, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md. 

Greg Freitag, MS, CSCS, exercise physiologist, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

Dan Kirschenbaum, PhD, vice president, clinical services, Wellspring - a Division of CRC Health; director, Center for Behavioral Medicine & Sport Psychology, Chicago; professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago.

Ann O. Scheimann, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore.

Anderson, S. , March 2010; vol 125: pp 420-428. Pediatrics

Barlow, S. , 2007; vol 120: pp S164-S192. Pediatrics

Bronson, P. , Hachette, 2009. Nurture Shock: New Thinking about Children

Hill, J. , Workman, 2004. The Step Diet Book

Rodearmel, S. , October 2007; vol 120: pp e869-e879.  American Academy of Pediatrics

National Sleep Foundation: “Teens and Sleep.”

Zeller, M. , 2007; vol. 15: pp. 126-136 Obesity

Garasky, S. , 2009; vol 4: pp 755-66. Social Science Research

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on March 11, 2018

SOURCES:

Lawrence Cheskin, MD, associate professor, Johns Hopkins Medical School; director, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

William H. Dietz, MD, PhD, director, division of nutrition, physical activity, and obesity, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta.

Karen Donato, SM, coordinator, overweight and obesity research applications, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md. 

Greg Freitag, MS, CSCS, exercise physiologist, Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, Baltimore.

Dan Kirschenbaum, PhD, vice president, clinical services, Wellspring - a Division of CRC Health; director, Center for Behavioral Medicine & Sport Psychology, Chicago; professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago.

Ann O. Scheimann, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics, Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore.

Anderson, S. , March 2010; vol 125: pp 420-428. Pediatrics

Barlow, S. , 2007; vol 120: pp S164-S192. Pediatrics

Bronson, P. , Hachette, 2009. Nurture Shock: New Thinking about Children

Hill, J. , Workman, 2004. The Step Diet Book

Rodearmel, S. , October 2007; vol 120: pp e869-e879.  American Academy of Pediatrics

National Sleep Foundation: “Teens and Sleep.”

Zeller, M. , 2007; vol. 15: pp. 126-136 Obesity

Garasky, S. , 2009; vol 4: pp 755-66. Social Science Research

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on March 11, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

How many steps should your child take each day to get fit?

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