Childhood is a period of rapid development, and being overweight or underweight during childhood can have an impact on adult health as well. Sunshine Pediatrics of Florida provides weight management and nutritional counseling for children in and around Lutz, Tampa, and Hillsborough County, FL, to help every child enjoy optimal health as they grow.
Weight Management Q & A
Sunshine Pediatrics of Florida
What is weight management and nutritional counseling?
Being overweight or underweight can have a major bearing on health, especially during the childhood years. During this time children depend on proper nutrition and optimized weight to fuel growth and development, and to help them participate in physical activities where being overweight or underweight may make participation problematic. Being significantly overweight or underweight can also take a toll on the self-esteem of a child and make it more difficult to “fit in.” Weight management and nutritional counseling are aimed at helping ensure children get the balanced nutrition they need to support healthy growth and development while also helping the child maintain an optimal weight for his or her height and age. Practicing good nutritional habits during childhood can also help children stay healthier and maintain ideal weights during adulthood, decreasing the risks of weight-related diseases and disorders.
What does nutritional counseling involve?
Nutritional counseling begins with a physical exam and evaluation to determine health issues including weight problems that need to be addressed in order for the child to be as healthy as possible. A complete patient history including personal and family histories of diseases will also be taken, and eating habits and physical activity levels will also be discussed. In some cases, lab work may be ordered to assess blood values of nutrients. Once these data are gathered, a nutritional plan will be developed based on the unique medical needs and lifestyle habits of the child to help promote optimal health and weight.
My child is a picky eater. Can they still benefit from nutritional counseling?
Yes. Nutritional counseling takes the food preferences and eating habits of the child into account, as well as lifestyle factors that may be influencing or contributing to picky eating. Plus, because picky eaters restrict the types and amounts of foods they eat, nutritional counseling can be especially important for ensuring they get the nutrition they need to grow and develop normally.