Monday, November 7, 2011

childhood obesity

In the past several years, the media has been full of reports of the rise of childhood obesity and related illnesses.  Diseases that were formerly only found in adults, such as Type 2 Diabetes, are now being found in children.  I thought of this after I had an interesting conversation with two ladies at work a few days ago.

We were discussing sugar and the cravings that many people have for it.  One of the ladies mentioned that her daughter did not allow her grandchild to have refined sugar for a "very, very long time".  I was expecting her to say that the child was 5, 6....maybe even 8 or 10 years old before eating sugar.  Nope.  Her grandchild was the ripe old age of 2 before she was allowed to have sugar.  Why does a 2 year old need sugar???!!!!  The other lady said that she knew some people who severely restricted their children's sugar intake, and she went on to say that she thought this was "cruel and unusual punishment".

Why are healthy foods the exception rather than the norm?  Why is it not  unusual to see a child with their baby bottle full of soda?  Why do we derive such pleasure from giving children ice cream, potato chips, french fries, etc. as soon as their able to eat solids?

Of course, I live in the south and in an area where obesity is unfortunately very prevalent.  Are other areas different....perhaps.

It's very sad to think that every generation seems to be less active and less healthy than the previous one. I can't change the world, but I can make an impact on my health and that of my family's.


  1. This is an interesting topic.
    Specially because it's a real problem in a world where many people are starving.
    What calls my attention the most is your co worker saying that giving a child sugar was "punishment" , I think a mistake we make (i include myself) is to use food "punishment" or reward.

  2. I wholeheartedly agree with you!! Food shouldn't be a punishment or a reward, but many of us tend to use it as such. This creates such unhealthy eating patterns. While there is nothing wrong with enjoying food, we should eat to live not live to eat. As with anything in life, balance is key.