How can parents help with Teenage Girl BMI? This is an apt question in minds of most of the parents in present times. The times which are marked by variety lifestyle diseases like obesity, diabetes & heart related troubles in young teens & adults alike. And Teenage girls are no different.

There is an increased than ever need to focus on BMI in our young teenage girls. BMI means Body Mass Index and it is a decent indicator of fat percentage in teens. BMI is generally calculated as the ratio of weight to height in adults. In simple terms, A Bmi tells whether the person has a healthy weight or not. Having BMI off the ideal range puts you at a higher risk for a variety of lifestyle diseases.

So it is a good idea to maintain your teenage girl’s BMI within the ideal range as per your her height. Let us discuss ideas to help your teen girl get to a healthy BMI. 

How can parents help with Teenage Girl BMI

At first, have a look at some of the statistics related to obesity in teenage girls. These are trends related to BMI in teen girls.

I have a similar post on Teen BMI and it presents a different set of statistics and trends which are not specific to teen girls only. Have a look at the post here.

How can parents help with teenage girl BMI

The data has been picked up from The Oxford Academic Journals and it refers to the time period of 1998 to 2011. 

Strategies on “How can Parents help with Teenage Girl BMI”

Eating Healthy Home Cooked Meals helps your Teen girl achieve Healthy BMI

One of the important responsibility of parents is to ensure your teen girl understands what living healthy means. What you eat and cook at home is an important determinant of your household health quotient. So cook healthy meals at home for your family. And support your teenage daughter in her health endeavours.

Exercising regularly helps your Teen daughter get healthy BMI

As far maintaining good BMI is concerned, holistic exercise routine is great addition to your teen’s everyday routine. And the kind of physical activity should be purely chosen on the basis of her interest and keenness. This is because imposing your will especially with the intent of weight loss would result in a half hearted agreement. Also when there is no fun involved in the exercise routine, it is bound to be gone from her routine soon.

So sit with her and understand what kind of physical routine she wants to adopt. It should be absolutely ok if your teen daughter wants to participate in same activity as her friends. Adding little fun element to the exercise routine can increase her motivation manifolds.

Another important point is that you as a parent have to walk the talk and do it yourself as well. Have the routine in place for your own self and follow it consistently.

Picking up & integrating good things from traditional lifestyle helps your teen daughter in getting a healthier BMI

While there are a lot of fad diets that internet is home to these days, the best advice on being healthy is something you get by listening to your body. Another great idea is to go back to living the life how our ancestors used to. Eating seasonal, local and whole foods and exercising while doing your daily chores is the way to healthy and fulfilling life.

However it’s not easy to convince teens to be away from all the attractive processed foods and fad diets and exercise programmes. Finding a balance however would not be that difficult for you and your teen.

For example anything that gives you convenience is something that is taking you away from your good health. Use a bike instead of car to visit your neighbourhood grocery store for example is something which is doable and practical.

Participating in team sports can help her reach her optimum BMI

While we realise the importance of academics and extra curricular, it is still out of the vision of many parents to understand the importance of participating in team games. Teens learn a whole array of life skills while they participate in team games. Be it a Football team or a basketball match, make your teen participate in one of the team sports.

Apart from working on finer collaboration skills, it works on your teen’s physical and mental fitness too. I am working on another blog post about team sports and what all your teen learns while being a part of them. So stay tuned for an insightful read, I promise it will present some really new ideas and benefits.

Making Wellbeing a Way of Life can help her maintain a healthy BMI

The way to develop this skill set is to make it part of your and your teen girl’s everyday routine – it should be a way of life than rather being a trendy lifestyle that you decide to adhere to once in a while. Here is how to go about making wellness and well-being a habitual part of your daily living

Involving your teen daughter in meal planning can help her attain a healthy BMI

This is an extension of cooking healthy and homely meals at home. Now involving your teens in meal planning is a great way to talk about otherwise preachy subject of Junk Food. Discussing about what’s healthy and how much should it be included in the daily diet helps in breaking a lot of myths in your teens minds.

At times it also brings a variety of facts to forefront that your teen has been intentionally ignoring. Sometimes under the pressure of peers, friends or fancy marketers.

Clean Eating is a great way for your teen daughter to reach her BMI Goals

Another major deterrent to good health these days is chemical laden processed food available in our grocery stores. Making an intentional choice about eating whole food rather than processed junk should be taught to teens.

Developing Mindfulness & Awareness about good health will help her maintain a good BMI

Another very important habit to instil in our teenage daughters for maintaining a good BMI is being mindful about our health. Being Aware of what they are eating and what effects will that have on their bodies is a great start to getting healthy and fit.

Furthermore, awareness of stress and its triggers and how teens respond to them is also a great skill to have. Teens and even adults have been guilty of over eating and eating junk food under the influence of stress their day today lives.

Setting Serious Screen Time Rules for your teen daughter can help her attain a healthy BMI

The biggest reason for increasing obesity in teenage girls is found to be their addiction to the screens. Whether its entertainment or studies, there needs to be an upper limit to how much they can sit at a stretch in front of their screens. Instilling a simple 20 mins rule when they are on screens to take a break every 20 minutes for a walk & stretch for 2 minutes is a great habit. 

Reasons for Obesity & High BMI in Teenage Girls

Adolescents who fall in the 95th percentile or above are categorised as obese. These are teens who are above the accepted levels of weight for the particular age and height.

Obesity is rising at alarming rates all over the globe as more and more adolescents are now suffering from overweight-related issues. At childhood, the health effects of being overweight may not be that prominent as in adults. But obesity if not handled well in the childhood stage, can lead to obese adults and adolescents.

In the adulthood, obesity has serious medical repercussions. It affects the heart and can also lead to diabetes. Some serious psychological issues like depression, low self-esteem, stress are also caused due to obesity etc.

It has mostly seen that teens who have unhealthy lifestyles are prone to become obese. Some of the common factors for overweight and obesity in teens include:-
Sedentary Lifestyles
With the growth of the digital media and platform, most teens today spend most of their time in front of the blue screen. Physical activity is almost negligible with teens being physically inactive. Rather than playing outdoors, teens spend their free time indoors watching the screens.Be it TV or surfing the net or playing games online. This is one of the major reasons of teens gaining weight these days.
Stress In Teens
 
Dealing with stress can make teens overeat. The causes of stress in teen daughters can be many. Some times the causes can be as complex as relationship & arguements between the parents. While at times simple things like their peers and their toys can create stress in young minds. You can read about my post on things to know about teenage stress here.
Infact if we go deeper into the subject, having stress is a part of life; the skills we have to deal with that stress is what makes and breaks the situation. So as parents if we are mindful about how we deal with our stress, we can create a great model in front of our teen girls to imitate. And this is one of a great addition to the ideas on  how can parents help with Teenage Girls BMI.
 
Junk Eating
 
Teens love to eat junk, fast and fried food that have zero nutritional value. this food is full of artificial sugars, oils and other harmful ingredients that are too high on unwanted calories. Desserts, chocolates, ice-creams, candies, and baked food also lead to unwanted weight gain in teens. Juices, soft drinks are full of sugar that impacts the weight of the teen.
Boredom in Teens

Similarly, when a teen is feeling bored, he may focus on eating. As parents, we should figure out the reason why our teens is getting back to food quickly. If the reason is boredom, then it is a clear sign that we need to actively engage with our teenage girls. And bring in little more responsibility & challenge in her everyday life.

Having interesting games, involving her in chores, having her friends home for a play date, reading books together, are good ideas to spend time creatively with your teen. Infact this is one area where we as parents can be as creative as we can. Volunteer for some community activity, plant a tree, let her have a free play time with things around at house. Encourage her to create something out of waste, or tell an interesting story. 

Genetic factors
 
Sometimes obesity is attributed to the genes. However, it is not essential that every child in the family will have weight related issues, if it is a family problem. But if it is in the genes, the chances or the risks of being overweight or obese will be high in the teens.

Convenience

With both the parents working full time to make the ends meet, many times just the convenience of using food from supermarket or take away becomes a habit. Therefore, eating Ready to eat or restaurant meals frequently devoid your teens of the essential nutrients and quality food. 

How is High BMI harmful In Teens?

Maybe not very critical in this age but as they grow older they become more susceptible to develop some serious health disorders. Also, there has been a direct correlation between the high BMI and various cardio vascular diseases. Diabetes, high blood pressure, abdominal fat and high bad cholesterol are just few examples. Moreover, overweight Teens are also more prone to asthma, sleep related issues.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases and regular bone fractures are also seen in more often in obese teen girls. Additionally, obese teens also suffer from low self-esteem, depression, loneliness, hopelessness. Further more, they are more prone to fall prey to bullies too. And having a high BMI Teen girl is a wake up call for parents to start introspecting and finding their own answer to “How can parents help with Teenage girl BMI”

How can Parents help with Teenage Girl BMI when she has a lower BMI

Ideally Low BMI Teen should take ideal amounts of nutrition. So, if she is not lacking in energy and any vital and trace nutrients in her annual medical examinations, it is not a big cause to worry. However an advice from an expert medical practitioner never hurts and should not be replaced with information in this post. Additionally, this information is good to build your knowledge but not take decisions basis this information. Infact I would advice you to take health related decisions with the advice from a trained medical professional.

So this is all about How parents can help with teenage girl BMI. And, I hope you would have gained real insight out of this post. So, do let me know in comments if you found this helpful.

You can also read about How can parents help with teenage boy BMI here

Hi, I am Kushal Singhal – Parent of two lovely kids and the Founder of Cafe Whiz.