8 Recipes to Care for the Nutrition of Overweight Children
Many families wonder how to help their little ones who have put on a few extra pounds. This is a common concern of parents, not only because the kids can get sick, but also for a healthier future for them. Without getting too complicated, a simple way to start is to make healthier recipes to take care of the nutrition of overweight children.
In this article, we’ll ignite that spark of gastronomic imagination to practice nutritious and healthy recipes for our children. Also, we’ll provide you with the latest statistics on excess weight and obesity in childhood. Keep reading to help take care of your children’s health!
A warning about excess weight and obesity in childhood
The World Health Organization warned that, by 2022, the dizzying increase in children and adolescents who are overweight or obese in children will be greater than those who are underweight. In fact, they warned that 33.6% of the group between 5 and 19 years of age and 8% of those under 5 would suffer from excess weight and obesity.
The appearance of excess weight between 0 and 5 years of age favors obesity for the rest of life. It also increases the probability of suffering from heart, kidney, circulation, and diabetes diseases, among others. In addition, as the organization HealthyChildren points out in 2023, overweight or obese children may have breathing problems, joint pain, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. In addition to depression or low self-esteem.
In the case of children, changes in weight and height during growth lead to comparisons with body mass index (BMI) values of other children of the same age and sex. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the following percentiles are used to assess BMI for age:
- Healthy weight: 5 and 84
- Overweight: 85 and 94
- Obesity: 95 and above
You can also read: How Do I Know if My Child Is Overweight or Obese?
Know the best recipes to take care of the diet of overweight children
A practical and participative way to reverse the situation of overweight children is to involve them in the construction of a healthy diet. Therefore, to facilitate the task, we’ll leave you some recipes for meals and snacks within the framework of the 2020-2025 American dietary guidelines.
1. Baked turkey with broken potatoes
Turkey is a source of animal protein that contains almost all the essential amino acids for the body. In addition, it contains no fat and can be seasoned with iodized salt and a little pepper.
Broken potatoes are a type of lumpy mashed potato that’s obtained by microwaving for 15 minutes. In addition, olive oil is added, which is known for its beneficial effect on weight loss. This was reported in a study published in the European Journal of Nutrition.
2. Fruit ratatouille
To combine other dishes and fill them with nutritious colors, fruit ratatouille is recommended as a side dish. It’s a preparation that includes tomatoes, peaches, apples, pears, and banana. These are prepared diced and sautéed in olive oil. It’s a simple recipe that boosts the intake of vitamin C, vitamin A, lycopene as an antioxidant, fiber, and potassium.
A 2020 review published in the journal Pharmacological Research highlights that lycopene consumption protects against obesity and diabetes. Tomatoes, tomato puree or sauce, watermelon, apricot, and guava, among others, are good sources of this antioxidant.
3. Baked potato fritters
For this appetizing low-calorie recipe, you should follow these steps:
- Cook the potatoes in the microwave for 15 minutes. Once they’re softened, mash them.
- Dissolve oil, salt, and whole wheat flour in hot water. Then, stir and let stand.
- Add eggs, one by one, until they’re well integrated into the mixture.
- Mix the puree with the dough and make small mounds on a tray.
- Bake in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes.
4. Fruit ceviche
Fruits represent the group of vegetables that regulate the functions of macronutrients in the body. In addition, they contain phytochemicals and antioxidants that are beneficial to health.
For this recipe, you can use strawberry, tangerine, kiwi, and banana. It’s made as follows:
- Cut the fruits into large pieces.
- Put them in a container with enough lemon juice, chives, cilantro, celery, and cold water.
- Let it rest in the refrigerator until serving.
5. Mozzarella, strawberries, and lettuce
This is a delicious salad that provides the anthocyanins of strawberries and natural sugars that will provide energy quickly. Lettuce is a source of fiber, vitamin K, and folic acid, which gives volume to the preparation and eliminates the feeling of hunger. Mozzarella provides protein and milk fat as a source of energy. Follow these steps for its preparation:
- Wash the strawberries and cut them in half.
- Wash the lettuce in vinegar water and add to the strawberries.
- Crumble the Mozzarella and place it on top of the vegetables.
- Add olive oil and a little salt.
6. Cauliflower and mussels risotto
Cauliflower is an edible flower that is often used for weight loss, as it contains 92% water and 2% fiber. To prepare it, you can follow these steps:
- Mash the cauliflower until you obtain a texture similar to rice.
- In a frying pan, brown with olive oil, garlic, and onion.
- Add the risotto and add vegetable broth.
- Cook for 15 minutes.
- Add cauliflower and mussels and cook for 4 more minutes. Add parmesan and salt.
7. Plant-based shake with oatmeal, banana, and nuts
This recipe is loaded with vegetable protein, natural sugars, and soluble fiber or beta-glucan from the oats. These nutrients provide satiety and regulate blood sugar, cholesterol, and lipids. A recent article in 2022, promoted by the Research Outreach organization, reported that beta-glucan can control body weight, BMI, and body fat tissue. In addition, it contains high values of potassium, zinc, calcium, iron, and magnesium.
It’s prepared as follows:
- Extract the milk from ground almonds.
- Add the banana to sweeten and the oat flakes.
- Process until a smooth mixture is obtained and serve with toasted almonds on top.
8. Chickpea and celery soup
Legumes are among the best sources of vegetable protein and are very low in fat. In addition, the journal Obesity Reviews studied them for their beneficial effects in the prevention and control of obesity and related disorders. You can prepare a delicious soup by following these steps:
- Caramelize the onion in olive oil.
- Add celery and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add cooked chickpeas, canned tomatoes, and vegetable broth.
- Bring to a boil and reduce for 50 minutes.
- Season with salt, parsley, garlic, and lemon zest.
You can also read: 2 Delicious Recipes with Chickpeas for Children
Accompany your diet with healthy habits
In addition to preparing these recipes to take care of the diet of overweight children, little ones should be encouraged to do physical activity for at least 60 minutes a day. Each day, the time can be divided into several sessions, and it’s ideal to appeal to a workout that’s fun. In addition, it’s key to avoid a sedentary lifestyle, get proper rest, and highlight the progress in weight loss with hugs and praise.
In turn, it may be important to have the help of a psychologist, in addition to a pediatrician and a nutritionist. Finally, the problem of overweight children should be recognized as an issue for the whole family. Therefore, the participation of all family members should be required.It might interest you...
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Cândido, Flávia & Valente, Flávia & Silva, Laís & Coelho, Olivia & Alfenas, Rita. (2018). Consumption of extra virgin olive oil improves body composition and blood pressure in women with excess body fat: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial. European Journal of Nutrition. 57. 10.1007/s00394-017-1517-9.
- Centros para el Control y la Prevención de Enfermedades. CDC. Acerca del índice de masa corporal para niños y adolescentes. Actualizada el 15/09/2021. Disponible en: https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/spanish/assessing/bmi/childrens_bmi/acerca_indice_masa_corporal_ninos_adolescentes.html
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Customizing the Dietary Guidelines. Revisado el 19 de abril del 2023. Disponible en: https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov/
- Healthychildren. org. American Academy of Pediatrics. Obesidad infantil: una enfermedad compleja. Actualizado el 1/5/2023. Disponible en: https://www.healthychildren.org/spanish/health-issues/conditions/obesity/paginas/childhood-obesity-a-complex-disease.aspx?gclid=CjwKCAjwov6hBhBsEiwAvrvN6ApFo8YYZfAsGnjBr_JAr6sgZBNO08ex4ejxm_DDpVPARg2MAo0v6BoCneIQAvD_BwE
- Mathews R. (2022). Effect of β-glucan from oats and barley on weight loss and adiposity. Research Outreach, 130. Available at: https://researchoutreach.org/articles/effect-of-β-glucan-from-oats-and-barley-on-weight-loss-and-adiposity/
- Organización Mundial para la Salud. (2017). La obesidad entre los niños y los adolescentes se ha multiplicado por 10 en los cuatro últimos decenios .Consultado el 19 de abril de 2023. Disponible en: https://www.who.int/es/news/item/11-10-2017-tenfold-increase-in-childhood-and-adolescent-obesity-in-four-decades-new-study-by-imperial-college-london-and-who
- Rebello, C. J., Greenway, F. L., & Finley, J. W. (2014). A review of the nutritional value of legumes and their effects on obesity and its related co-morbidities. Obesity reviews : an official journal of the International Association for the Study of Obesity, 15(5), 392–407. https://doi.org/10.1111/obr.12144
- Zhu, R., Chen, B., Bai, Y., Miao, T., Rui, L., Zhang, H., Xia, B., Li, Y., Gao, S., Wang, X. D., & Zhang, D. (2020). Lycopene in protection against obesity and diabetes: A mechanistic review. Pharmacological research, 159, 104966. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2020.104966