Everywhere I go now I see over weight or obese children and frankly, it makes me sick. What chance do our children have to become strong, fit and healthy adults when they are obese before they hit high school. I think it very sad to see children as young as 12 developing diabetes. Childhood and adolescence is hard enough with out being overweight. School children can be very mean and often don’t realise the long term damage they are causing when giving the fat kid in class a hard time, not to mention the social impacts. How can someone with a poor self-image have and maintain a happy relationship with someone from the opposite sex.
The biggest question we must ask is, who is to blame for our over weight and obese children. Well there is no single answer and if that was the case, this problem would already be solved. But some of the key contributors to this problem are the following:
Firstly the children’s parents. Studies have shown that children with overweight parents have an 80% greater chance of becoming overweight themselves. Lets be frank here. The diet of young children is, more often than not, dictated by their parents. If young children become overweight, most likely their family are killing them with kindness.
Another big player in this problem are our schools. Children often have two meals a day from school and what chance do they have if the school canteen is stocked full of fatty foods and soft drinks. Shame on the school for putting the profit before the health of our children. On a positive note there are some schools that have taken bold steps and eliminated junk food from there canteens, lets just hope other schools adopt the same attitude.
The last major cause of this epic problem with our children is the time they are living in. Forget a new skate board or bike for birthdays, now it all about video games and ipods. In fact the gaming industry makes so much money now, that it’s become bigger than Hollywood with millions spent on making a video game; some how kicking a ball around at the park has become very boring. With our dependence on technology growing everyday, I’m sure you will agree that this is only going to get worst.
So unless there is a massive shift within the minds of parents, our schools and the general lifestyles of today’s children, this extremely worrying trend will only become more severe in the years to come.