If you see that your toddler is gaining weight too fast, especially with a family history of obesity, it’s time to act. The longer your child remains fat, the greater the chance she’ll always be fat. Remember, during these years fat cells are multiplying and exercise habits are being established. It only takes small changes in calories and physical activity to slow down a toddler’s weight gain. The goal now is not to have your child lose weight, but rather to slow down the weight gain. Toddlers should not be starved or put on a diet that is not nutritionally well-balanced and adequate for all her needs. Switching from regular to low fat milk, changing snacks from junk food to raw fruit and letting him spend more time outside playing and less time sitting in front of the television set is what is needed. If you think your toddler is overweight, discuss it with his doctor.
Dr. Alvin Eden is chairman of the department of pediatrics at Wyckoff Heights Hospital in Brooklyn and associate clinical professor of pediatrics at Cornell University Medical Center. Dr. Eden has authored several books including “Positive Parenting” and “Healthy Kids”.