The Effects of Unhealthy Eating in Adolescents and Children in the USA

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Thirty percent of children and adolescents in America are either obese or overweight. According to APA, the American Psychological Association stated that “Approximately 20% of our youth are now overweight with obesity rates in preschool age children increasing at an alarming speed.” This is more than the past generations had suffer through in the health category for the children and adolescents. Eating a proper diet and a balanced diet is lacking in the United States, which is why it has increased in obesity in children and adolescents. For starters, eating junk food instead of eating an appropriate amount of nutrients for your health is the reason why the United States children and adolescents suffer from this problem called obesity. It is very important to know that taking care of your body starts by feeding the body the right amount of nutrients. More and more children are diagnosed with obesity or are just overweight each and every year. Therefore, this is the reason for researching the topic of benefits for healthy eating and why the body needs to be replenished with proper nutrients. It is also necessary to help persuade people to choose the right lifestyle for their children with information.

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The lens that was researched is the educational lens because it connects to how do the effects of healthy eating in the United States promote lifelong health, academics, and self-motivation. Healthy eating as a child or adolescents in the United States promotes lifelong health. For example, when your parents’ practices brushing their teeth after every meal and teach it to you without forcing you too, your child will most likely carry that lifestyle for the rest of their childhood and adulthood. So when the parents are an example for their children and eating healthy without making them hate it, they’re going to grow up practicing a healthy living lifestyle for oral health. My text evidence is from, powered by the American Academy of Family Physicians which said that “eating healthy is usually going to stick with you if you start as a young child.” The American Academy of Family Physicians also stated “If you prepare and eat healthy foods yourself, your child will eat healthier, too. Avoid obsessive calorie-counting. Don’t talk negatively about yourself. Your child could adopt the same attitudes.” So setting an example for your child can help them not risk any of these terrible health problems because eating healthy will also help you prevent diseases later in their future of adulthood. Children suffering from obesity have a higher rate of having disorders and diseases from the lack of being healthy.

CDC the Center for Disease Control and Prevention with no author mentioned said, “Healthy eating patterns in childhood and adolescence promote optimal childhood health, growth, and intellectual development; prevent immediate health problems, such as an iron deficiency anemia, obesity, eating disorders, and dental caries: and may prevent long-term health problems, such as coronary heart disease, cancer, and stroke.” This quote explains my sub-claim on healthy eating preventing long-life suffering. Eating healthy helps make people feel and think better about giving healthy nutrients to their body what it deserves. Eating a well-balanced diet will not only prevent obesity in kids and adolescent but will also make them focus more in school. David Just which has a Ph.D. in agricultural and economics works for Cornell University. He is the co-director of the Cornell Center for Behavioral Economics in Child Nutrition Program which explains the reason why he contributes to writing this article called “3 ways nutrition influences students learning potential and school performance”. It states in the article that, “Other studies find that improving the quality of students’ diets leads to students being on task more often which increase math test scores, possibly increases reading test scores and attendance.” David Just describes the studies of children and adolescents who eat a well-balanced diet are doing well in school and are more focused. That’s why eating healthy is a benefit because it helps you a lot when it comes to academic.

CDC the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, elaborate more on how eating right boost your focus stated that “Student participation in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) School Breakfast Program (SBP) is associated with increased academic grades and standardized test scores, reduced absenteeism, and improved cognitive performance.” It explains how eating breakfast, (a balanced diet) in the morning raised test scores and had an increase in performance levels in school. Overall, eating a balanced meal and eating healthy benefits children and adolescents in academics. Children and adolescents who are struggling with obesity have a higher chance of getting bullied while having low self-esteem which is physically and emotionally abusive towards their self-confidence and degrades their focus in school. My text evidence is from APA the American Psychological Association stated that “being obese place children at being a risk of teasing and bullying.” They also stated that “Many adolescents, particularly teenage girls, have body image concerns and engage in unhealthy weight control behaviors.” Having low self-esteem affects people way more than you know. Low self-esteem is going to lower your confidence because if you don’t feel great your not going to think well. And that may be the case for people with obesity.

Low self-esteem may also link to horrible conditions like Anxiety and depression. The text evidence was written by Elizabeth Venzin. Elizabeth Venzin is a CEO and a founder of an organization from Australia called Mind shift- the Nashville Self-Esteem Initiative, says that “Over time this can lead to low self-esteem which can reduce the quality of a person’s life in many different ways. Unchecked, low self-esteem may even lead to mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, sometimes with tragic results.” She also states that low self-esteem may be caused by bullying which is most common by people with obesity. The evidence for low self-esteem may be caused by bullying is written by Elizabeth Venzin said, “what causes low self-esteem? There are many and varied reasons, but according to clinical psychologist Dr. Lars Madsen it’s frequently traced to abusive or dysfunctional early years, the effects of which can persist well into adulthood.

It can also be attributed to ongoing stressful life events (e.g., relationship breakdowns; financial troubles; poor treatment from a partner, parent or carer; being bullied; or being in an abusive relationship).” Studies show this percentage of people with obesity are bullied. So eating healthy and making sure your physically and emotionally healthy helps you feel better about yourself. Being mentally right in the mind is very important and eating nutrition for your body cleans it and make you think better and feel better and that can help you when it comes to education. Therefore, the Obesity rate is growing at a fast rate each year. With obesity that is exponentially growing eating healthy can help children and adolescents prevent obesity and many diseases. Consequently, this is the reason for researching the topic of benefits for healthy eating and why the body needs to be healthy. So eating healthy affects children and adolescents because it gives you many benefits. Finally, eating healthy in the U.S. promotes lifelong health, academics, and self-motivation.


Venzin, Elizabeth. “How Does Low Self-Esteem Negatively Affect You?” Psych Central, 28 Feb. 2014, “The Impact of Food Advertising on Childhood Obesity.” American Psychological Association, American Psychological Association, “Health and Academic Achievement.” Health and Academic Achievement, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 2014, Just, David. “3 Ways Nutrition Influences Student Learning Potential and School Performance.” EXtension, “National Center for Biotechnology Information.” Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports., U.S. National Library of Medicine, “Latest & Current News – Weather, Sports & Health News.” Global News, Global News, “Clickfunnels.” AcTechi – Web Design & Development Agency, “Good School Nutrition Can Boost Students’ Performance.” Global Digital Citizen Foundation, Global Digital Citizen Foundation, 9 Dec. 2016,

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The effects of unhealthy eating in adolescents and children in the USA. (2019, Jul 26). Retrieved November 29, 2022 , from

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