“We have laws against leaving a loaded weapon with our children, why should food be any different?” Daniel Weintraub says. Childhood obesity is not just about your kid being overweight, it is a serious problem caused by imbalance between calorie intake and calories utilized (Kluwer). Kids who are having excessive body fat are said to be clinically obese and at risk of developing health problems (Thompson). Should kids be punished for this? Should they be blamed? If not, who? According to a parents’ survey, 1% of parents blamed manufacturers; 7% blamed advertising on TV; 9% blamed the child; 10% blamed fast food companies; and 73% blamed themselves (Iannelli) It is the parents duty to make sure their child receives healthy and enough nutrition to sustain their body. But giving them access from eating everything they want is like giving them a weapon to use but might end up harming themselves if used incorrectly.
Bullying is not normal nor new in every student’s lives. They get bullied especially in their physical appearance. Childhood obesity makes the child fat and uncomfortable. They can be a center of attraction and that will affect their mental health. Depression, anxiety, and low self esteem are just some of obese children might go through everyday. They are also most likely to experience learning disabilities, asthma, headaches and ear infections (Katz). Children will suffer not just from their body size but also what they are feeling inside. Obesity causes the children to have sleep apnea, it is a type of chronic disorder when a person suddenly stops breathing for ten seconds or even longer at night, and bone, joint and growth plate problems (Katz). For those children who has obese range of size, they can also have liver problems. When it comes to puberty, they get to experience it earlier than those who are not obese. When they get older, it is normal for them to develop diabetes, stroke, cancer, and osteoarthritis. Unfortunately, they can also have shorter lifespan than their parents.
Schools are made to teach students reasoning and thinking skills, and to add more knowledge to what they currently have. They don’t need to remind children what to eat or should not because they should already know that before even entering school (Metallo). Even though they offer their students food every nutrition and lunch, it’s still the students choice if they’ll eat it or they will not. They can’t force their students to get food if they doesn’t want to. There are still students who carry their lunches to school, no matter what that is (Metallo). Students have the rights to bring what they wanted to eat, it doesn’t matter how unhealthy it is. Schools might be serving healthy foods to their students, but it does not mean students will be automatically be healthy since not everyone is willing to eat what the cafeteria is serving. Why can’t schools ban the junk foods? They can and if they will, it will not stop childhood obesity. If there is junk out there, kids will find it (Metallo). When the stress kicks in, that is when the time school is being one of the reasons children couldn’t get to have their proper nutrition (Cummins). Students spend a lot of their time doing tons of homework, studying for their quizzes and making their projects, to the point that they don’t have time to eat and if they do they will just eat whatever is easy to make and available, frozen and fast foods.
Fast foods are people’s go-to choice if they lack of time and energy to cook. It makes everything easy especially for busy parents who doesn’t have time to make breakfast or dinner because of their jobs (Popkin). Fast food might be appealing for everyone because of its advertisement who can make everyone salivate. Every fast food restaurants would do anything to make their food looks great to sell more. It is in our hand if we’re not going to stop ourselves for being attracted to it. We all know how unhealthy fast foods are; it contains huge amounts of carbohydrates, unhealthy fats, sodium and sugar (Popkin). Eating too much fast food might causes people a lot of diseases but we will not be affected if people know their limit. Fast food places might always on our way but it’s our option not to be force to stop our car, in the first place, they are not forcing us, nobody is. They might be encouraging us but we should know where to stand. There is nothing wrong about craving for something unhealthy, but students should know their limit.
Parents are part of everyone’s lives. We have been with them since we were born. They taught us how to read and write, what’s right and wrong, and they lead us on how to become the person we are today. “Parents know best”, but do they really? Did our parents never lack reminders? One of the parents priority is their child’s safety. It is their responsible to always keep them from harm, not just in external but also internal. Parents should always bring their kids to the doctors for their regular check-up. They don’t know what is happening inside of their offspring’s body. Some parents might think their child is healthy by just looking at their physical features, but looks can be deceiving. According to a British survey, only 11% of parents distinguish their child’s weight precisely (Barbour). Being unaware of what’s happening to your own child will include the risk of them going through something without the help of their parents on ending it. The fact that they are responsible for it, they should know how to cure it with the help of their pediatrician. What led for their child to be obese? First, their genes, 35 - 40% children inherit their condition from their parents (Dolton). Second, the variety of food parents are giving to them. Parents are known for being lovable and thoughtful, to the point that they are will to provide anything they can for their kids. But there is a thin line between being thoughtful and reasonable. It is everyone’s general knowledge especially for parents the proper food to eat. Being busy and tired is not excuse for providing them anything just to fill their stomach. They are superior to their child, they should practice their child to learn how to control their craving and wants.
“Childhood obesity isn’t some simple, discrete issue. There’s no one cause we can pinpoint. There’s no one program we can fund to make it go away. Rather, it’s an issue that touches on every aspect of how we live and how we work.”, Michelle Obama says (Kluwer). Treatment should start at home, and is not just about dieting. Changes will revolve around the activities, lifestyles and the nutrition of the child. There are multiple goals on what we should address; behavior, weight, and medical goals. Behavior goals is the child to discipline themselves on a proper and healthy eating and activities. Medical goals is to prevent any issues or complications in their bodies. While the weight goals is based on their age and conditions. It is not only about their body mass index, obesity is a serious issue that involve the child’s being (Cochran).
Through this research, we can say that the children is most likely to be obese when their parents didn’t became a good example to them. It is extremely important for the child to have a parent with a healthy nutrition and physical activity. Not just the parents alone, we should also reflect about how our environment perhaps shaping us in decision making. And also ourselves, everyone should be disciplined and learned how to control their own body so we won’t have to spend $100 billion again but less to deal with this kind of issue (Pica).
Barbour, Scott, “Introduction to Obesity: Opposing Viewpoints”, Greenhaven Press, 2010. Accessed 14 Feb. 2019.
Cochran, William, MD, “Understanding the Childhood Obesity Epidemic”, Obesity Action Coalition, 2017
Cummins, Denise, “The Rise in Obesity is Due to Stress”, Obesity, Greenhaven Press, 2015.
Dolton, Peter, “Child Obesity ‘35-40 Percent’ inherited from parents”, Medical Press, 2017.
Iannelli, Vincent, MD, “Who is at Fault for the Childhood Obesity Epidemic?”, Verywell Family, 12 Jan. 2019
Katz, David, “The Physical Consequences of Childhood Obesity”, Verywell Health, 29 Nov. 2017.
Kluwer, Walters, Childhood Obesity: A Global Public Health Crisis”, Medknow Publications, 2012.
Metallo, John, “Banning Junk Food in Schools is Not Effective”, Should Junk Food Be Should In School?, Greenhaven Press, 2014.
Pica, Rae, “Who’s Responsible for the Childhood Obesity Crisis?”, Life, 2015, Updated 27 Aug. 2016
Popkin, Barry, “Fast Food Is Not a Major Cause for Childhood Obesity”, Childhood Obesity, Greenhaven Press, 2016.
Thompson, Tamara, “Parents are Responsible for What Children Eat, Not Restaurants”, Greenhaven Press, 2015. Accessed 11 Jan. 2019.
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