Childhood obesity has become a serious issue in United States that requires urgent attention. This has been related with the growth of technology as well as accessibility of fast foods and snacks. The current systems in education and lifestyle changes do not allow children to participate in much outdoor activities and hence resolving to stationary activities that make them lazy and ultimately obese. One of the contributing factors in my opinion is the fact that parents have become too busy to attend to their children also makes them stressed and hence looking for other means through which they can comfort themselves. Food and television has hence become a perfect friend and companion to children who are ignorant of the health implications. The movie ‘The Weight of the Nation: Children in Crisis’ highlights some of the dangerous that are associated with sedentary lifestyle on children and how child obesity has become an issue of national concern.
I am amazed that sicknesses that were earlier associated with old age such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and the likes have become more among children. This has been associated with the culture of technology and fast food industry (Berg, 1997). Children are spending more time before television screen than they are doing on outdoor activities. Similarly, we as parents have become so busy with the moneymaking business that we have little time for our children. This also stresses the children who find television and snacking as the best companion. Security issues associated with out door games have also made most parents to chain their children in the houses and hence giving them little chances to shed off some calories. The sedentary lifestyle where children are driven to and from school spoilt with goodies that are high in sugar and fat as well as minimum playing space in school and at home has made it difficult to contain the issue. The issue of childhood obesity is beyond the family circles as it posses a great threat to the future generation.
I can ascertained with deep concern that with the continuing trend of childhood obesity, the lifespan of children affected will be shorter than that of their parents. This is simply because children are being exposed to dangerous health conditions at a younger age. They are hence forced to live on medication, which lowers their level of immunity. Considering the addictive nature of such a lifestyle, it will also be difficult to discourage the trend completely among children. This therefore means that our children will keep on snacking and not having enough exercise. As they persist, their health complications will advance, leading to stress and ultimately early death. It has hence become necessary for the government to intervene and ensure that children are safe from obesity. A total life change is the key to the success of the procedure, which can be implemented, with the support of parents and teachers.
One of the strategies that the government has put in place is by enhancing school diet. This involves the provision of appropriate and balanced food components to children to minimize on the level of snack intake. There is also the need of ensuring that more time is set aside for children in schools for physical activities (Carrel, 2012). Vigorous activities such as ball games, rope skipping, jumping and running around, play an important role in keeping the children active. This will also minimize on their stress level, which is responsible for poor eating habits. There is also need to address children’s psychological needs especially those who are from abusive backgrounds and single family. Addressing the needs of each child will ensure their self-esteem is checked hence increasing their self-worth. There is also need for us as parents to attend to our children to minimize on the rate at which they watch television.
Healthy and whole grain foods, which are considered less appetizing and old-fashioned, need to be encouraged especially among growing children. I as a parent have the power to influence the lifestyle of my children at a younger age. This can be done by defining what they will do during their free time and the kind of foods they eat. The more they get used to healthy foods, the more they will appreciate it. However, the need to please and excite children makes parents to expose them to snacks and fatty foods, which indeed harm their health. However, after watching the video, which is a revelation to the society, it will prompt parents and teachers to ensure that the children are accustomed to healthy lifestyles (Kolander, 2011).
Personally as a parent, I have taken the initiative to ensure my daughter is not part of the obesity crisis. Among some of the efforts is to enroll my nine-year daughter to a dance and gymnastic class. I also ensure her snack box is filled with the right serving of vegetables and whole grain meals. My husband and I also show her perfect example by engaging her in boxing and doing zumba, aerobics and calisthenics which she joins. Other foods such as candies and sodas are only taken on weekends and critically analyzing the food components of the products, I buy from the shelves. I understand that it is my responsibility to ensure my child lives a healthy and productive life.
Apart from just acting as a provider to the children, parents need to take a keen interest in improving the psychological and physical wellbeing of their children. This will also save them the need to invest a lot in medical treatment for the deteriorating health of their children. It will be meaningless for parent to be so busy making money and using it to splash their children with unhealthy foods and later own use the money to take care of their health. Prevention remains to be the best alternative to cure.
Berg, F. (1997). Afraid to eat: children and teens in weight crisis. New York: Healthy Weight Publishing Network.
Carrel A. (2012) The Weight of the Nation: Children in Crisis retrieved from