why is healthy eating important for children
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 25 percent of all children aged 2 to 18 years now meet the criteria for being overweight. Overweight and obese children are at greater risk for major health issues such as Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, joint pain, high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. Teaching your child good nutrition habits from a young age can decrease the likelihood he will become overweight.
Choosing nutrient-dense foods such as fresh fruit and vegetables over empty-calorie foods such as cookies and sodas can help prevent childhood obesity and provide your child a much higher quality of life.
Scientists have been studying a group of Dutch citizens whose mothers were pregnant with them during a World War II winter famine in 1944-45, in an effort to understand what happens when children don't receive healthy foods.
The Nazi armies blocked food deliveries to German-occupied sections of the Netherlands during an unusually cold winter to punish the Dutch resistance to the German occupation. These children had an elevated death rate during their first year of life.
As adults, this population displayed abnormally high levels of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, mental illness, drug addiction and kidney damage. The restoration of food supplies after the famine was over could not compensate for the prenatal damage inflicted on the children by starving their pregnant mothers.
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