Childhood obesity therapy

Main focus of our obesity therapy

Obesity therapy means:

  1. Normalization of the fat content in daily meals
  2. Increase the intake of carbohydrates
  3. Avoid long periods of inactivity
  4. Increasing active movement in everyday life
  5. Dealing with failures
  6. Increase self-confidence and self-esteem
  7. Permanent getting used to the new behavior

Objective of the measure:

Stabilization of the reduced weight to improve or avoid health-risk consequences of being overweight.

Here are some excerpts from the therapy concept that can be downloaded from the Silberberg Clinic presentation:

1. The overweight child

Some parents still believe that a fat child is a particularly healthy child. However, this is not correct for many reasons. It is known from extensive statistical studies that overweight children take overweight into adulthood in about 80% of all cases. This creates the predisposition for nutritional diseases that are related to the risk factor “overweight”. In addition to the health risks, there are other equally important psychosocial aspects for the overweight child, which can also be transmitted into adulthood. For example, fat children are often rejected by their peers because of their immobility and are therefore easily mistaken for outsiders. This can lead to the child looking for substitute satisfaction in the meal. The circle closes: there is more to come.

1.1 How does obesity develop??

Obesity is the result of a disturbed energy balance, i.e. over a period of time more food was consumed than the child could consume. This inevitably leads to an increase in body fat and thus a health hazard. The development of overweight in children is often due to wrong eating habits in the family and the closer environment. The innate regulation of hunger and satiety is continuously influenced as the child ages. This means that the child’s eating behavior is shaped by imitating the parents, by curious advertising, by family traditions (e.g. banquets) and by many other factors.

1.2 weight loss

To achieve weight loss, the daily calorie intake should be about 20% below the calorie requirement. The slower and steadier the weight is reduced, the safer it is that the desired normal weight can later be easily maintained. The reduced calorie intake is the starting point for weight loss, i.e. but not that the child will go hungry in the future. The reduction in calories can be achieved by changing the diet. The adequate supply of animal and vegetable protein, high-quality fats, healthy carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and trace elements must also be guaranteed during a reduction diet.

It is also important to know that the normal weight child has a great urge to move and therefore uses up a significant part of the calories consumed. In contrast, the fat child is reluctant to move because of its high body weight. More exercise, possibly under the guidance of a specialist in a sports club or through a new exercise-promoting hobby, is an important measure for weight loss.

3 "Golden Rules" for slimming and staying slim

  • Learn how to deal with the fat content of various foods together with your child.
  • Only buy lean meat and lean sausages. Remove all visible fat before cooking or roasting. Lean meat contains a lot of protein, which is particularly important for your child in the growing phase.
  • Hidden fats (e.g. in pastries, sauces and sausages) should be avoided (100 g salami contain e.g. between 50 and 60 g fat). Good, low-fat sauces can be made using low-fat yogurt or skimmed milk.
  • Save calories on spread fat! Use a half-fat margarine. This saves approx. 900 kcal per cup compared to normal margarine or butter.
  • For salad dressings, for roasting, baking and cooking, only use high-quality vegetable oils and fats that contain a high proportion of polyunsaturated fatty acids.
  • Children especially love sweets. It is therefore difficult to restrict their intake. But it should be because most sweets contain a lot of fat. If something sweet, then fat-free or low-fat e.g. gummy bear.
  • Your child’s diet should be as rich in slag as possible. Fiber-rich Food such as salads, vegetables and whole grain bread have a high satiety value. They also promote digestion in a natural way and prevent bowel diseases.
  • Pay attention to a balanced mixed diet with fruit and vegetable supplements, so that an adequate supply of all important nutrients, vitamins and minerals is guaranteed.
  • The daily drinking amount should not be less than 2 l per day. Replace heavily sweetened lemonade and cola drinks with low-calorie products: mineral water, tea, juices without added sugar.
  • Make sure you have an adequate supply of milk and products. It contains most of the calcium, and that’s important for growth. Caution: note the fat content!
  • Clear broth or your child’s favorite salad before meal is an effective way to reduce hunger.
  • Be economical with the use of table salt. use instead of its onions, herbs and other salt-free spices.
  • Divide the meals into 5-6 small meals instead of 3 main meals.
  • Adhering to fixed meal times is important. If exceeded, the hunger becomes too great and often too much is eaten.
  • Children are slightly impatient when eating. Try to eat more slowly with your child and chew every bite well – because if you chew well, you will get full sooner.
  • "What is on the plate is eaten" – this is an outdated rule. Allocate small portions. Better put it in again, your child should stop eating when it is full.
  • Try to prevent your child from eating (without you knowing it) on the side. Otherwise you will lose control of the "calorie schedule". It also includes the "bed candy" and nibbling on television.
  • Make sure that your child learns to actively move in some way. The child should not be forced to do any sporting activity that is not fun and that makes them stand out from others. Some fat children like to swim and practice a sport that is good for their health and may even make them feel successful.
  • Fat parents often have fat children because the children adopt their parents’ eating habits. In this case, the problem of "overweight" must be solved together.
  • The will to cooperate with your child is important, but not always easy to achieve. Sometimes it helps to have your child help with the list of dishes. It depends on your empathy for the child’s psyche whether the desired goal is achieved with patience, love and understanding and above all without compulsion.
  • Regular weighing (once a week in the morning and in the same clothes) is important. Your child should keep records. The scale watches incorruptibly over the result of all measures.

If you manage to limit your child’s calorie intake and apply the "golden rules", then success will not fail. Children also need a sense of achievement to be happy about it.

4 psychological aspects

  • Exchange, working in the group about experiences in the hospital stay and experiences in the context of the child obesity program (successes, processing of possible failures, ..) as psychological group support during the hospital stay
  • Exercises for body awareness / energy exercises (according to Dagmar Herzog)
  • Relaxation exercises to promote body awareness (Autogenic training for children), strengthening self-awareness, self-awareness
  • Working together to solve problem situations for overweight children
  • Fantasy journeys and stories to deal with (child) problem situations, to promote self-confidence, the decision >5 Why exercise helps the overweight child

Regular physical activity contributes as much to losing weight as sensible eating.

  • The metabolism is stimulated, fat tissue is broken down and muscle tissue is built up
  • Physical activities strengthen the ligaments and tendons, stimulate the circulation and provide new energy.
  • Also particularly important for overweight children – we help these children to overcome their passivity and lethargy and reduce stress
  • While romping around and moving around, these children do not have the need to “stuff themselves” with chips and ice cream. Sport should be playful and fun here at the Silberberg Klinik Bodenmais
  • With our sports program, the negative body feeling, which plagues many overweight children, can be changed for the better. This also increases self-confidence. Obese people are more easily integrated into the class and group.

Of course, losing weight doesn’t happen overnight. Our program is an introduction, motivates movement examples and measures to continue at home. Losing weight takes a lot of time and needs motivation. Movement is an essential part of this process.

5.1 Which sports are suitable

Overweight children and adolescents are usually ashamed of their round contours and are afraid of the mocking reactions of their surroundings when they look immobile during sports and are bad athletes. In our clinic they are trained in sports in special groups and brought together with other children. Because moving with others is fun, makes new contacts, friendships are made. The sports plan and the various sports are individually tailored to the children, but should always promote group integration if possible.

relieves the body of the usual heaviness, hardly stresses the joints and above all strengthens the weakened back muscles

To go biking
strengthens the heart and circulation, promotes endurance and condition

trains all muscles and can be used against fat deposits

Roller skating, skating, ice skating
strengthens the leg muscles, builds dexterity and coordination

helps the circulation, muscles and condition

Badminton, tennis, table tennis
promotes flexibility and responsiveness

6 therapy goals

Obesity therapy means:

  1. Normalization of the fat content in daily meals
  2. Increase the intake of carbohydrates
  3. Avoid long periods of inactivity
  4. Increasing active movement in everyday life
  5. Dealing with failures
  6. Increase self-confidence and self-esteem
  7. Permanent getting used to the new behavior

Stabilization of the reduced weight to improve or avoid health-risk consequences of being overweight.


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