Childhood Obesity Hits Home

Share Button

obesegirlvectorexerciseFrom Your Health Journal…..”I wanted to promote an excellent article I found from the LA Times written by Mary McNamara, who does such a great job with this article – – I had to share it. As you know, childhood obesity is on the rise, as 1 in 3 children are now considered overweight in the United States. Along with this, obesity related diseases are also on the rise, which include heart disease, type 2 diabetes, weak joints, cancer, and asthma. Change is needed, and educating families on healthy lifestyle is important. The author of this article (who states she was overweight as a child) states a deluge of cheap junk food, the ubiquity of high fructose corn syrup and other sugars, the absence of physical education in schools, outrageous marketing aimed at children, cost-cutting in school cafeterias — all make it far too easy for children to eat themselves sick. Well said. PLEASE visit the LA Times web site (link provided below) to read the FULL article. Ms. McNamara does such an excellent job educating her readers on this obesity epidemic facing our youth. Support her work!”

From the article…..

Take it from someone who knows: The struggle with childhood obesity, illustrated vividly on television, is a battle of both the mind and the mouth for an overweight kid.

I was a pioneer of childhood obesity.

By the time I was a junior in high school, I weighed more than 200 pounds. I was a fat kid before being a fat kid made you the topic of a national conversation and the first lady’s pet project, back when Gatorade still tasted gross and no one knew how many calories there were in anything.

For most of my childhood, I was the only fat girl in my class — I can still name the other two fat girls in my grade. Now, fat kids fill the playground and the high school bleachers, including a whole new breed of fat girl who wears skin tight jeans and mid-riffs and dares anyone to say anything. Seeing them, I must admit I am torn between despair and envy.

I never expected to see my childhood reflected on television — overweight young characters are still rare even post-“Hairspray” — but there they are, my modern equivalents, on “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution,” “Too Fat for 15 and Fighting Back” and, most recently, HBO’s multi-pronged documentary “The Weight of the Nation,” all part of a collective attempt to address America’s childhood obesity epidemic.

According to these shows, and many reports in other media, the root system of this crisis is insidious and widespread. A deluge of cheap junk food, the ubiquity of high fructose corn syrup and other sugars, the absence of physical education in schools, outrageous marketing aimed at children, cost-cutting in school cafeterias — all make it far too easy for children to eat themselves sick.

As a former obese child who fights all these forces to remain a normal-sized adult, I applaud every show, every article, every effort. But here is what I know about being a fat kid: It is at least as much about your head as it is about what you put in your mouth. Yes indeed, bad foods are cheaper and more seductive than healthful foods, and we need to call a cease-fire on the endless barrage of junk kids face. But it is also true that fat kids eat differently than non-fat kids, something that is rarely discussed.

To read the complete article…..Click here

Comments are closed.