I was an advent fan of Maury Povich years ago, that's before he started focusing on baby's daddy. I'll save my opinion on baby's daddy for another day. Anyway, Maury was featuring obese children on his show. OMG, the images will be ingrained into my memory forever. The show featured toddlers that weighed 100+ pounds. Mothers were literally feeding their children to death. The children would scream and fight until they received their favorite foods and drinks, which consisted of Twinkies, soda, chicken legs, mac & cheese, chips, and the list goes on and on. It was heart breaking. These children were huge. There was no way these children could be lifted to be hugged and kissed. There was no way these children could run and play. It still brings tears to my eyes years later just thinking about it. Statistics show that approximately 32 percent of our children are overweight or obese and the numbers are climbing. Our armed forces are turning away recruits because they are too fat to serve in the military. Can you believe this, the recruits couldn't climb a flight of steps if their life depended on it. They surely can't enter into combat to defend our country.
We must save our youth before it's too late. They are our future, but if we continue on the path that we're on they won't be around to lead. Health care costs are at an all time high, and much of the debt relates to obesity. High blood pressure, diabetes, and respiratory issues are serious problems with our youth too. Here's a few questions for you: Do you see children playing in your neighborhood? What happened to riding bikes and taking your children to the park to play on the swings and slide? What happened to taking your kids roller skating? We've allowed our children to become couch potatoes. A video game is in one hand and a bag of chips or ice cream is in the other.
How can we go wrong with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (S. 3307). This bill addresses the need for healthier meals for our children. Let the fight against obesity begin. Many children would go hungry without the Free Lunch program offered in our schools. Many parents who are trying to feed their families are unable to purchase organic or other healthy choices because it's just too expensive to purchase these types of foods. They send their children to school, and what's there? Vending machines filled with chips, chocolate, and soda. When do they get a healthy meal? Where do they learn to make healthy choices, it's not an option in the home. We are sending our children to school to get an education, shouldn't healthy eating be a part of their education?
I participated in the White House Feed A Neighbor Program several weeks ago. The shelves were bare, and food banks were asking the community for help stocking shelves so families could have a decent meal for Thanksgiving. It was a rewarding experience for me, but I have to say that fresh fruit and vegetables were not an option among the food brought in. Food banks are unable to store perishable items. They must have a self life.
Most importantly, I wish someone had taught me how to eat when I was a kid. I was not an obese kid, my weight problems started after my divorce. I'm a stress eater, which is why I am so hell bent on teaching healthy lifestyles early. I have gotten better with walking and moving as much as possible, and I've already signed up for a weight lose program starting 1/4/2011. Stay tuned for my progress in the new year. Although my eating habits were not great, my daughter did learn to eat healthy as a result of 12 years of formal dance training. She has made it a part of her life and she's passing that mind set on to her son. To me that's proof that healthy habits are taught.
We would love to know your thoughts on this bill. Do you believe the government should be regulating school menus and the removal of junk food? Should the government be the initiator of the fight on childhood obesity? How are you doing with preparing healthy meals in your home? Leave us a comment, we would love to hear from you.