Over Medicating, Under Educating – Part 3

Part 1 looked at how age affects a child’s ability to concentrate as compared to their peers.  Read it HERE
Part 2 looked at how nutrition plays a role in the energy levels of children.  Read it HERE

What about Exercise?!

Now that we have examined what children are eating how about looking at the amount of exercise a child gets each day.  With the introduction of the internet, multiple television channels dedicated just to kids shows, personal gaming devices, tablets etc… kids are spending more time in front of a screen instead of in the yard or at the park.  In fact malls across the US are removing play areas and replacing them with IPad stations!  WOW!  You add this lack of exercise to the increased consumption of sugar and we are left with ADHD.
Our bodies were designed to move.  Kids naturally have more energy than adults, they need more exercise.  When they don’t get it the latent energy comes across as hyperactivity, fidgeting in class, the inability to pay attention.  So how do we fix this?  Across North America classrooms are changing, schools are allowing for more physical activity in class and gym periods more often.  Often this is still not enough because kids are going home straight to their video games and snack foods.  They still need the means to release energy in the evenings. 
In our house there is a “no electronics before 7 pm” rule.   That’s means 1 hour or less of screen time in a day.  I hold this even on weekends forcing them out of the house to play in the yard or at the park J  When you couple this rule with homework and things like dance, soccer or martial arts some days there is no electronic use at all J The removal of screen time automatically leads to increased exercise. 
This may sound like torture but after about a month it becomes routine and they don’t even notice anymore.  Of course every household is different.  If you work outside the home and are not home until 5 and the kids have a hour alone then this can be their screen time and after 5 electronics get turned off. 


What all this breaks down to is attention to detail pay closer attention to what your child is eating, to how much exercise they are getting and don’t compare them to the other kids in the class.  There are too many factor at play.  Also don’t settle for a diagnosis, get multiple opinions!  This takes time and commitment but it will be better for their health in the long run.

Read Part 1
Read Part 2

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