AAP Recommendations on Preventing Obesity and Eating Disorders

From AAP Committee on Nutrition, Pediatrics, August 2016Full text: Preventing Obesity and Eating Disorders in Adolescents

  1. Discourage dieting, skipping of meals, or the use of diet pills; instead, encourage and support the implementation of healthy eating and physical activity behaviors that can be maintained on an ongoing basis. The focus should be on healthy living and healthy habits rather than on weight.
  2. Promote a positive body image among adolescents. Do not encourage body dissatisfaction or focus on body dissatisfaction as a reason for dieting.
  3. Encourage more frequent family meals.
  4. Encourage families not to talk about weight but rather to talk about healthy eating and being active to stay healthy. Do more at home to facilitate healthy eating and physical activity.
  5. Inquire about a history of mistreatment or bullying in overweight and obese teenagers and address this issue with patients and their families.
  6. Carefully monitor weight loss in an adolescent who needs to lose weight to ensure the adolescent does not develop the medical complications of semistarvation.
Gardens at University of Virginia

Gardens at University of Virginia

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