All over the Country we have seen a huge increase in the problem of obesity. But, the most frightening rise is that in children.
I first became concerned about childhood obesity when I was working for the State one Fall in local schools. We were going to Elementary, Middle and High Schools teaching kids how to open a new type of milk pouch.
When I went to the Elementary schools, the youngest children were mostly of normal weight. But, the higher grade the larger percentage of obese children.
I began to watch what was being served to the children at the schools. Many of the children actually eat breakfast and lunch at school each day. Instead of healthy choices, children were given sausages on a stick, dipped in pancake batter and deep fried with a side of syrup to dip them in...and "breakfast pizza". No fresh fruit or healthy cereal was available. Chocolate and strawberry milk were plentiful.
Lunch time rolled around and Pizza and corn dogs and corn, and fries...no fresh fruit again...no fresh vegetables. More chocolate and strawberry milk. And, in addition, there were snack machines with unhealthy snacks and cola machines everywhere!
Oh My Gosh...no wonder the kids are getting fat! I have been a big supporter of Jaime Oliver's program to try and get healthier foods into American School Children! It is critical folks. Talk to your school principals and superintendents. Speak up often and loud at PTA meetings and enlist other parents in the cause. The squeaky wheel...well you know how that goes!
Along with an increase in obesity, comes an increase in diabetes in children, heart problems and high blood pressure. We must change the way our children are being fed.
I am pleased to see that some of the fast food chains are beginning to offer more healthy choices. But, if you as parents don't make the right choices for your children you are guilty of contributing to the problem.
Sometimes your have to say no to the fries and get apple slices instead. Choose the plain burger over the fried chicken nuggets. We can do this. We can take back our children's health. It starts at home...it starts with YOU! Don't buy those sugary cereals, don't buy those sugar laden soft drinks and juices. Children will eat right if the right foods are presented to them.
I purposely didn't include pictures in this blog...THIS ISN'T A PRETTY PICTURE..IT IS AN UGLY PROBLEM!
Let's get the kids running, swimming, playing on the playground. Limit the time your child can spend in front of the television or computer. Be an example, and do it with them. Get out there and walk, bike, run and swim....you and your children will live better lives because of it!