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Dr. Stacey Rosenfeld Offers Tips on How to Raise a Child who has Body Confidence and a Healthy Relationship with Food
Date:5/18/2010

Counting calories may lead your child to disordered eating -- from obesity to anorexia, says specialist Dr. Stacey Rosenfeld

New York, NY (Vocus) -- With the incidence of disordered eating continuing to rise among children, being a psychologically savvy parent can help significantly decrease chances that kids will develop an eating disorder or have a poor body image, says New York City-based psychologist and eating disorder specialist Dr. Stacey Rosenfeld. Disordered eating --whether obesity, anorexia, or other forms -- can be prevented in many cases if parents look at their own bodies differently.

“While eating disorders have genetic components and are influenced by peer groups and media exposure, there are concrete ways that parents can help promote healthy eating and a positive body image for their children. Kids are very smart and they pick up on their parents’ relationship with their own bodies and with food.” Dr. Rosenfeld explains.

Parents may not even realize that when they themselves count calories or nonchalantly criticize their own body -- or someone else’s -- that they may be sending cues to their child which can have long-term and serious repercussions. “Children need to feel confident about themselves and their bodies -- no matter what shape or size they are -- in order to have a healthy lifelong relationship with food. This starts with modeling their parents and seeing a positive body image and security in one’s own skin,” Dr. Rosenfeld says.


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