There is a marked difference between being a few kilograms over weight and having an obesity problem. The earlier it is identified the better. At age 5 the average weight should be about 20kgs and height about 110cm. by age 10 the weight should be about 25-30kgs and height about 130cm.
Very distinct signs of obesity start showing around age 7& 8. If at age 7or 8 the child is already 30 kgs or more, then parents need to look into her/his diet and lifestyle seriously. Thinking that it is only puppy fat and it will disappear as they grow up is not the simple solution. Today I have children come to me who at age 10, 11 and 12 are anything between 60-80kgs. I have also seen teenagers who are 80-100kgs.
This is not just overweight. Overweight is 5 to maximum 10kgs above your ideal weight. Anything above this is obesity and has to be identified and delt with very seriously from childhood and as early as possible. We have observed that there is a very strong connection with gland related problems like diabetes, thyroid and imbalances of reproductive hormones.
Also adults who are 20-30 kgs over weight must consider the health and weight status of parents, grandparents and immediate uncles and aunties on both parents sides. The commonest problem relating to obesity is family history of diabetes. Those with close relatives having diabetes may see that they have been on the plumper side from childhood. Also they gain weight rapidly, that is half to one kg in 3-5 days of travel festival eating and they are seen to take very long to lose weight.
Those with a thyroid or reproductive hormone imbalance will see the same weight gain, weight loss pattern and also find themselves feeling very lethargic and sleepy, even during the day time. What is the solution? Do we say we have a problem, so accept it and just be fat. Certainly not! We have a problem, accept it and know that we have to work much harder than others to be normal. But surely all can be normal. I am living proof of this. I have had a weight problem since age 10. There is a very strong diabetes problem on both sides of my family and I also have polycystic ovaries and now if I try to lose weight it takes a lot of effort and may be I lose only 1kg in a month. But take heart we can lose 12kgs in a year so why not.
The first step is to start regular exercise everyday. No holidays for the hormones so no holidays for the exercise. We have to walk everyday, 7day a weak. Many can lose weight with just 20-30 minutes walk. We may have to work harder 30-45 minutes or 30 minutes morning and 30 minutes evening.
Children can do 20-30 minutes daily for a start. But there is no way to balance hormones without regular walking. Walking is the best exercise because it is needed everyday and can be done anywhere, even when you travel.