American Heart Association (AHA) advocates the use of social media to combat childhood obesity and improve children’s health. They suggested parents to use social media to encourage kids to do exercises, run or partake other physical activities. In addition to serving as a motivational tool, parents can use social media to monitor and track kids’ physical activities, correct their diet, consult with other parents, counselors and pediatrics to devise programs in order to alleviate the risks and effects of obesity.
AHA suggests parents and “Healthcare providers should embrace its potential as a tool for promoting healthy behavioral change.”
How does social media aid in fighting obesity?
Parents can create communities, programs and pages that will address childhood obesity problems and invite kids and other parents to join these weight loss programs to spread the message among parents and kids. Parents can devise programs, spread information and awareness about weight loss and health risks of obesity. They can also encourage kids to post data about their physical activities and exercises such as distances covered, count of hours spent in exercises or any other physical activities, calories burnt and the pace in which they are running, jogging or walking. Parents are also suggested to ask their children share their score on fitness games played on Nintendo Wii Fit or Microsoft Kinecton on social networks. Thus, parents can motivate their kids to join fitness programs and lose weight faster.
Fit-ify Facebook pages
Parents can get their kids use Fit-ify website which allows users to sign-in using Facebook credentials. This website contributes a great deal to share users’ data on cardiovascular workout on Facebook. You just need to add the Fit-ify application to their Facebook profile. Once you grant Fit-ify access to your Facebook data, you will be redirected to a page wherein you can add height, gender, weight and keep track of weight history, exercise history, fitness goals and awards won on accomplishing specific milestone.
Facebook fitness apps
Apart from Fit-ify application, parents can consider other Facebook applications such as MapMyRun, Calorie Counter, Yoga Poses, Cardio Trainer, MapMyFitness, and Nike+ Running. Kids using Smartphone are recommended to download mobile apps such as Endomondo and Runtastic which features social media integration.