Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Chubby Tubby - Cute or an epidemic?

This article in today’s New York Times discusses the epidemic of corpulence and the plans of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to spend more than $500 million over the next five years to reverse the increase in childhood obesity.

This article got me thinking if we adults are the biggest contributors to childhood obesity. People have busy lifestyles so a quick fix of junk food has heinously replaced freshly cooked meals, in innumerable homes. You are what you eat! To exacerbate circumstances, ever since the advent of television and videogames, there has been a remarkable alleviation in the physical activity children partake. Forget calisthenics; what happened to the good old days of movement and motion when kids around the block would just play together? Be it unsafe neighborhoods or lack of time, for few parents, letting the kids watch TV or a videogame is an easy way out. While watching TV, very often, kids devour food high in sugar, trans fat, sodium, and other deleterious additives. Lack of activity, imprudent habit of appeasing palates with self-indulgent fatty foods, minimal interaction with other kids and voila, what do we have - a portly, introvert, angry kid looking at few hours of therapy by the time she/he is in college.

I know there has been clamor over how companies (like McDonalds, Burger King, and Taco Bell etc.) should not be directing their ads towards children and people accuse the idiot box for this soaring epidemic. Maybe I sound harsh but I think it is time we took onus upon ourselves. These are marketers and this is what they do. Parents need to get over their guilt of not spending enough time with children and stop fulfilling every desire, however asinine. If you abstain from junk food & eat healthy, your children will eat healthy. They would not know otherwise.

Indulging in sinful fare occasionally is a fine treat, BUT eating healthy every once in a while means you are adding to the growing epidemic of portliness. To annihilate this issue, parents need to take matters in their own hands. I’ll leave you on this note - according to Census Bureau data and a 2006 study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, 25 million children 17 and under are obese or overweight, nearly a third of the 74 million in that age group.

Copyright © 04.04.2007

"I hate people who are not serious about their meals." - Oscar Wilde


g said...

Nice. Though I must say, I was on overweight kid (and adult) and have thoroughly enjoyed it!!

m said...

You are right two cents. I grew up eating all kinds of unheathy food. but once i had a kid, we ate only organic. if i don't teach my kid now then when.

Anonymous said...

i love the name...haaaaa...chubby tubby. jokes aside we need to do something about this rising epidemic.

vizzy said...

Very good, well thought out & timely article

e said...

I feel you live only once. why compromise then.

From Venus said...

We're long overdue for a back-to-basics revolution.. eating fresh, eating healthy, getting more exercise, and ultimately, passing on these values to the next generation.