RobardUser Robard Corporation | Weight Management Advice for Dieters & Healthcare Professionals

Children Eat Worse at Home than at Daycare

Providing a child with a proper diet is vital for their future health. But what if we told you that daycare and child care centers are feeding children healthier foods than they get at home? That’s what a recent study from the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center has concluded.

Let’s start with why child care centers are providing better food choices. These centers base the children’s meals off of guidelines from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. These guidelines include how much fruit, vegetables, and milk a child should be consuming under their care.

The study exposed that once children left the centers, they weren’t eating enough fruits and vegetables, or drinking enough milk. They were also consuming more calories than needed; In fact, the excess calorie consumption (including sweet and salty snacks such as pretzels, crackers, cookies, etc.) was to the tune of 140 additional calories. 
This is a dangerous recipe for childhood weight gain — and future health. A retrospective study found that as BMI increased in adolescence the probability of obesity as an adult significantly increased as well. Obese male youths are 18x more likely to become obese adults, while obese female youths are 49x to become obese adults (1).

So, where’s the disconnect? How can there be such a contrast in diet between child care centers and the home? When it comes to children, we first have to look at who’s feeding them. Centers run their diet by guidelines; however, what are the guidelines that parents or caretakers are adhering to? As obesity numbers continue to skyrocket in the United States, it appears that the poor diet habits of adults are trickling down to children. It should come as no surprise that children born to obese mothers are twice as likely to be obese and to develop type 2 diabetes later in life (2).

What can we do? Let’s start with having some guidelines of our own, such as the ones created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics which were created to lay the foundation of the best diet possible. Sure, we can occasionally indulge in crackers or cookies, but if children are eating too many of these, it’s safe to conclude that adults are as well. Let’s apply healthy guidelines in our own diets, and do the same for children. Let’s lead by example.

Source: Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Additional Sources:
(1) Wang LY, Chyen D, Lee S, et al. The Association Between Body Mass Index in Adolescence and Obesity in Adulthood. Journal of Adolescent Health, 42(5): 512-518, 2008.
(2) Maternal and Infant Health Research: Pregnancy Complications. In U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (accessed March 2011).


For Providers, Weight Loss is all in a Day’s Work

What is a healthcare provider’s role in helping a patient lose weight? How about the general health of the patient? Ultimately, healthcare providers are best equipped to diagnose what is ailing a person and, perhaps more importantly, they are well educated in recommending and administering the correct procedures and advice to alleviate ailments.

This is well illustrated in a recent study conducted by Johns Hopkins researchers where 300 overweight people partook in a medically supervised weight loss clinical trial. At the end of the trial, regardless of how much weight was lost, the sentiment of the participants was overwhelming: The support of the provider was extremely helpful.

There can be a push/pull relationship between the patient and the provider, and when discussing weight, it could become an arduous one. However, in this study, once that barrier was broken and the patient was accepting of the provider’s tutelage, there were better results in medication schedules, appointment keeping, and improved outcomes in overall weight loss.

What does all of this mean? With many things in life, people are willing to help you along the way. For some, it’s what they do for a living. Healthcare providers are more than willing to help; it’s an oath that they took. Are you, the dieter, willing to accept their assistance?

Source: Johns Hopkins Medicine


Eat More, Exercise Less...?

Quick: What’s the first thing you think of after you eat a Clif Bar or a bowl of Wheaties? Do you want more? You wouldn’t be the only one according to a recent study published in the Journal of Marketing Research which states that not only will you eat more of these “fitness foods,” but you will also exercise less. Researchers believe the root of this comes from “fitness branding” where marketers promote their products as “fitness foods” resulting in the mental relaxation of how much food you’re actually consuming, and you’re your physical activity.

I was a little taken back when I saw this. I’m a fan of Quest Bars personally, as well as Robard’s very own protein supplement bars. But I tend to limit myself to one bar a day, and in the case of me eating more than one, I certainly wouldn’t charge it to “well, its fitness food, so it must be OK.”

But then I noticed that “restrained eaters” were used as the subjects of the study. Restrained eaters are eaters who are chronically concerned about their body weight and, probably most importantly, they are susceptible to overeating. This is a stark contrast from a “natural eater” who “usually eats when hungry, stops when sated, and doesn’t think much about food in-between meals.”

Participants were given trail-mix marked both “Fitness” and “Trail Mix,” and were told to “pretend that they were at home helping themselves to an afternoon snack.” Then, they were given eight minutes to taste and rate the product. Now even though the study wanted to see how the branding of the snacks would affect the eaters, wouldn’t the type of eater they are also play a factor into how they would react?

Studies have been conducted between the correlation between obesity and restrained eating, partially because being a restrained eater could lead to overeating. Signals of hunger, satiety, and other factors that play a role in how you eat aren’t necessarily concise with a restrained eater. However, it is in the natural eaters’ nature to only eat when they have to, no more no less.

The study’s ultimate goal was to have marketers of these products do a better job of including other fitness cues that are a part of being healthy as well as letting people know that there is more to fitness than just the products they are marketing. But don’t we know that? What do you think?

Source: American Marketing Association, Calorie Count