Effective weight loss for kids: lose 1 kg in 10 days

childhood obesity

 

An obese child could lose nearly 1 kg in 10 days without cutting daily calories. The child lost the extra weight simply by eating meals with less sugar and fructose, according to a recent study in the US.

The study by the University of California in San Francisco showed the harmful effects of sugar and fructose on children’s weight and health. The study involved 43 obese children from age 8 to 18 years. They were given daily meals, which limited their sugar intake to 10% and fructose to 4% of the total calories they consumed each day. Sugar and fructose were 40% of the calories they ate prior the study.

Reduce Sugar And Fructose In Kids Meals

Fructose is a simple carbohydrate like sugar, except it is derived from fruit sources. High-fructose corn syrup is a sweetener, commonly found in soft drinks, packet juices, sweetened cereal, chocolate and candy bars.

The sugar and fructose were replaced with other type of carbohydrates like fresh fruit and starch, such as bagels, cereal, pasta and bread. The levels of calories from protein and fat the children were kept largely similar to the levels they were eating at home prior the study. The children were not deprived of snacks. The low-sugar added, processed foods they ate included turkey hot dogs, bean burritos, baked potato chips and pizza. By Day 10, all the children lost weight. The average weight loss was 0.9 kg, according to the study published in the Obesity Journal in October 2015.

 

Lose Weight Without Cutting Food Intake

The weight loss was achieved without reducing the total amount of calories the obese children were eating. The children ate the same amount of calories they were given at home. The sugar and fructose were substituted with mostly starch.

The obese children were also able to burned more calories with significant improvements seen in the metabolic indicators when they were re-tested. On Day 10, the fasting triglycerides fell 6% on average, the fasting LDL cholesterol was 0.3 mmol/L lower and the diastolic blood pressure down 4.9 mmHg . Their bodies were also able to produce more insulin to regulate the blood glucose levels. The fasting glucose was down 0.3 mmol/L on average and the fasting insulin down 53%. Type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and hypertension are common diseases associated with childhood obesity.

In Singapore, about 12% of the school-going children are overweight, up from about 9% a decade ago, according to the Ministry of Education.

 

Don’t Need A High Protein Diet For Kids’ Weight Loss

For weight loss it doesn’t have to be a protein-rich diet of fish and meat. Replacing sweet snacks and soft drinks with dietary fibre like fruit and starch would create a positive effect on children’s health and weight, the study showed. In local context, the carbohydrate substitutes would be starchy food like noodles, rice, buns and bread. It is a food menu that low-income families with obese children could afford. A high protein diet of fish and meat are often recommended for weight loss but they are more expensive to prepare.

 

Kids Of Normal Weight In High Sugar Diet Also At Risk Of Diabetes 

Weight gain and over-eating (meals with high calories) are known risk factors for childhood diabetes. The researchers said the amount of sugar in the child’s daily meals is also a risk factor, and arguably, it is the most important factor. A child of normal weight is also at risk of Type 2 diabetes and other chronic metabolic diseases if the child’s daily caloric intake is primarily from sugar and fructose. It does not matter how much calories a child consumes as much as where the calories are from. Sugar and fructose are not healthy. But the harmful effects could be reversed, even among children in the high risk group. The obese children in the study were healthier in 10 days on a diet of low sugar and fructose.

However, a diet with less sugar and fructose does not mean no sugar or fructose. Glucose gives a child an energy boost when needed, and keeps lethargy away. Eating ice-cream is also a simple pleasure that every child enjoys.

Apart from healthy eating, getting plenty of exercise is as important. Let the child play in the playground, park or on the beach. In terms of fun factor and caloric output, nothing beats running around and playing catching when you are a child.

 

Source

Lustig, R. H., Mulligan, K., Noworolski, S. M., Tai, V. W., Wen, M. J., Erkin-Cakmak, A., Gugliucci, A. and Schwarz, J.-M. (2015), Isocaloric fructose restriction and metabolic improvement in children with obesity and metabolic syndrome. Obesity. doi: 10.1002/oby.21371.


 

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