CHILDHOOD OBESITY IS OFFICIALLY A PANDEMIC. NOW IS THE THE TIME TO PRIORITIZE YOUR CHILD'S HEALTH!
Uh-oh, the snowball has become an avalanche! Childhood obesity may destroy everything in its path. Seriously!!!
As the debate over concern of the Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) and then the Swine Flu have come and nearly gone,
a real life pandemic has taken our country by storm: Childhood Obesity.
Over the past thirty years, the rate of obesity in children in the United States has more than doubled for preschoolers and adolescents, and it has more than tripled for children age’s six to eleven. America now finds itself in a real quandary concerning the health, or lack of it, of our nation.
Obesity takes a terrible toll on the human body, significantly increasing the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, infertility, gall-bladder disease, osteoarthritis and many forms of cancer. Because of this accelerated aging, we now live in an era where many experts believe that parents will live longer than their children. It is not uncommon to see children with diseases that we used to call “adult” problems.
Adult onset diabetes is becoming a more and more common disease for children under the age of ten. Obesity has now passed smoking as the number one preventable killer in America, and as the rate of childhood obesity rises we can expect that number to only rise.
We should not: Do Displacement activities; watching television, playing computer games or surfing the net displace real human activities like walking/running, playing outdoor games, or engaging in weekend activities.
Today, let’s focus on the most important aspect of the childhood obesity concern: nutrition. Our bodies were meant to consume real foods, not refined and processed foods like white sugar, flour, pasteurized milk and hydrogenated vegetable oils, things that the “displacement” foods are loaded with. When we consume foods that are loaded with calories and void of body sustaining nutrients we in actuality are killing ourselves.
I actually teach that we can be, and are, malnourished in America on 5000 calorie a day diets. These empty calories rob the body of essential vitamins and minerals on a daily basis leaving us not only heavy, but diseased. The majority of us in America only view a meal as a time to consume calories or energy, when we should be viewing our food as a potential detriment (displacement food) or benefit (real food).
If we just go back a century when we did not have these concerns of obesity and disease the opportunity to consume displacement foods were very limited, and our diets were predominately made up of real foods that were just killed, caught, milked, harvested or picked. This regimen of foods was loaded with body edifying nutrients, not denatured fats, salts and sugars.
So, who is responsible?
Obviously, the parents
and the schools should work hand in hand to educate the children and get the best food possible to them. The food manufacturers, government and the media carry some responsibility, but because they all have a bottom line to meet, their motivation is not that same as the parents and the schools.
Where do you start?
Parents? Does your child consume more “displacement” foods than real foods? If so, begin to change the ratio for the good, and educate your child on the short term and long term consequences of consuming the Big Six.
Schools? Begin using real foods for the meals and have no vending machines available to the students. Educate the students on how they look and feel, including deficit disorders, may be directly related to what they eat and drink. Help create an opportunity to snack on real food, like fruits and vegetables.
The majority of children in America would get no fruit or vegetables on a daily basis if they did not consume Ketchup, Potato Chips and French fries.
Childhood obesity is a real in your face pandemic, and it will not go away without a lot of effort and people changing their perspective on beneficial nutrition.