Monday, April 5, 2010

Chubby kids... its not ok

I saw something at S*m's Club today that was disturbing. Disturbing enough that its resulting in SECOND post of the day. Two post one day?! It must have been something.

And it wasn't the rather large lady who had clearly forgotten to put on her bra but was wearing a shirt that said "Do you believe in love at first sight?". Although that was disturbing. Trust me. Even dash1 couldn't look away.

This was something else, something that always upsets me and sadly something I see more and more of lately..... overweight kids. And not just a little chubby, both flyboy and I had our chubby periods, that's normal {hormones are a bitch aren't they?}.

No I'm talking about obese kids. This boy was probably only a little older then dash-1
but probably had a solid 30 pounds on him. And that my friends is close to double dash1's weight. It was sad really, he was so pudgy that you couldn't see his neck, and when his family drove past me in the parking lot he barely fit in his car seat {which by the way was the same model as dash-1 which is why I'm pretty sure he is right around his age}.

Now before I end up with a uniform purse amount of hate mail about how some kids have metabolism issues or what not, let me put out the disclaimer, yes, some kids have a medical reason for their weight. Sometimes it simply is.

Shoot, I got me one on the other end of the spectrum {althought we have an apt tomorrow for a weight in so hopefully we'll have some answers and hopefully he's gaining weight}.

However, the whole medical, big boned thing, IN MY OPINION, is not the case for the vast majority of obese kids.

And while we're at it, don't blame hormones in milk or meat either, blame the sodas, ring dings, and crap they are shoveling in their gullets. Yes, there might be things present in the meat that wasn't around when our parents were kids but lets be honest, here is what makes you fat, let me break it down for you, Eating too much crap AND not moving enough.

There ya go, and kids these days are doing both. And parents these days are FAILING THEM.

Yeah that's right, I'm gonna blame the parents. You know why? Because kids do not know how to drive the car to the commissary and buy twinkies. You know who does? Parents. o if I have an obese youngin who isn't out of my sight then the blame but rest at my feet. That being said, I feel for parents of kids in school who are trying their darndest but have to compete with the crap that's sold in the cafeteria.

But obese toddlers, no excuse. None. Zip.

Look, I'm no Mother Teresa of vegetables, I'll be honest here my kids hate vegetables. They like their oreos, fruit juice reigns supreme over milk, and they have a sweet tooth. However, I, as the mom, balance that.

I mean really, one kid thinks he's an astronaut and the other wants to be lightening mcqueen, I really can't leave health decisions up to them without some serious guidance now can I?

Dash-1 had a problem with milk a while back, everytime he drank it he threw it up. EVERY TIME. He's actually afraid of milk now and well, I'm tired of cleaning it up. So it's not really a beverage of choice in our house, dash-2 likes drinkable yogurt and in moderation I'm cool with it. They do drink a lot of juice BUT, I water it down.... a lot. And I've started giving them Fruitables which actually have a serving of vegetables in one box drink. I love it! And so do they.

They love fruit snacks so I've switched over to organic ones, with the sugars coming from fruit purees or juice, no added sugars or food coloring. Still not perfect but in moderation...

They like oreos but those are an occasional treat from the commissary when the price is right. And honestly, just between you and me? If I buy them, well, the kids get a couple and flyboy sucks down the rest. For other snacking they eat whole wheat pretzels, crackers, or 100 calorie snack packs.

And fruit. We go thru so much fruit that I buy it in bulk at the warehouse stores. I like the farm stands but up here that's only a summer thing {and by that I mean 2 months it seems}

So there, I'm not perfect but neither one of my kids is even a slight bit chunky. I don't want to seem judgmental of others but sometimes I just want to go up and slap the parents.

You know how I noticed this kid? He was filling up his soda as I was filling up my soda.

Again, a five year old was filling up his soda.

Yeah that's right, I drink soda, its my weakness, but you know what, my kids dont. I'm amazed everytime I see parents giving kids, little kids soda. I saw one woman pour it into her kids bottle! If you are drinking soda out of a bottle two things, 1. you're too old for a bottle or 2. you're too young for soda. Either way its just wrong. {again IN MY OPINION}

It's amazing how it's becoming such an epidemic. Perhaps it's just because I have kids so I notice it more now then I did a few years ago but it seems that it's something that I see more and more frequently. Almost on a daily basis now.

And don't blame the fast food companies targeting kids. I mean don't get me wrong what the heck is a happy meal but a marketing tool, but again, my five year old isn't steering the car to McD's.

{And yes, I'm guilty, my kids eat fast food, but they get nuggets and apples. And no soda. Sure as hell no soda.}

I know its not easy. I get that, I bribe with food sometimes. I like to make treats for my kids. Shoot, I am guilty of eating crap, but don't parents see what they are doing to their kids? Why not just strap a bomb to their gut?

Are we in agreement? What do you think about the childhood obesity problem? Are parents to blame? It's ok if you have a differing opinion, as long as your not rude speak your peace.

{I don't mean to end this suddenly, I hear dash-1's asthma acting up and dash-3 is stirring. I know when my peace is coming to an end.}

32 comments:

  1. I totally agree with you. I am amazed that there are kindergarteners that weigh almost as much as I do. It really makes me sad for those kiddos. They can't make smart choices about what they eat, heck, they can't even make smart choices about how they treat others. Thats why parents HAVE to do something.

    And school lunches...ugh...that's a whole other issue. I mean how to do nachos (chips and processed cheese) count as a meal?

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  2. I also agree with you. I think that, barring medical issues, having a clinically obese child should be a call for the medical profesionals and Children's Services to look at counselling, home visits, or other interventions, the same as any other kind of child abuse. Because I truly believe that is what it is.

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  3. I completely agree with you. My husband and I do not have kids yet, but we've discussed how we want them to grow up with with an active lifestyle and be exposed to healthy foods.

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  4. I agree! I'm not a parent, and I know everyone says, "My kid will never..." and I won't for a second say that. I mean, heck, my 24 year old boyfriend won't eat vegetables outside of salad and mashed potatoes, and if I make anything that includes vegetables, he won't pick around them, he just flat out won't eat it. Not frustrating at all!

    But yes, parents need to pay attention and realize their kid can't and shouldn't eat like they do, and especially not the same amount they do!

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  5. I'm on your side on this one. I would also add that not all "healthy" snacks (or at least snacks that are marketed as healthy) are meant for kids. I once saw an obese toddler down a bag of Sun Chips during a 25 minute storytime. Sure, Sun Chips are "healthy" (or at least better than some Lay's) but a whole bag? For a three year old? In 25 minutes? That is negligent parenting. Period.

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  6. I completely agree with you. I just commented on another blog about how so many Marine Wives are fat (and I am one of those!) For me, I learned at a very early age to depend on comfort foods, and I see this is a MAJOR problem for today's children. I have been in the child development field for almost 20 years, and I can't TELL you how many children are handed TREATS several times a day to 'shut them up'. If a child is climbing on mommy wanting attention, she shoves a cookie in his hand so he will go away. Another child is tired, needing a nap, and mom hands him a pack of fruit snacks from the stash of junk she ALWAYS carries in her purse for him. It's sickening. I personally get really mad when people try to placate my own children with junk food. My kids are all healthy (knock on wood). We do eat fast food from time to time, but we also skip the soda - partly because it cuts the bill in HALF if we just get free waters (or bring our own bottled water). Now that they are older (the ones I have at home now are 15 and 10) I do let them order soda when we go out to eat at a restaurant, but I always instruct the waiter/waitress NOT to bring us refills. In fact my teenager usually orders diet soda now, copying hubby and me.
    I can't claim to be perfect, or even the world's best mom, but I am so sick and tired of seeing parents who refuse to PARENT their own children. (I think I've just been inspired to blog about some of the tantrums I've seen in stores lately....)

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  7. I also blame the parents. When I see an obese child out with their parents (especially at an eating establishment) my heart breaks for them. I remember being a big kid... and, you're right, kids don't know squat about eating healthy. And then there are the parents that sit in their cars while their kids play (which I recently ranted about - thanks for your input, btw) which is a SUPER example of showing your kids exactly what you shouldn't do. Ugh.

    Aside from improving school lunches, nutritional programs, and perhaps requiring nutitional programs for parents of obese kids there isn't really a solution. Unless the whole family changes the kids will still be obese. And very few of those morbidly obese families are willing to change or know how to change.

    Sorry for the long comment. I could go on but I won't.

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  8. TOTALLY agree with you! My husband and I were just having this conversation! I gave my 19 month old a home made cookie the other day and he put it down and walked away. He didn't even know what it was. Yet a friend of mine gives her 18 month old chocolate bars and juice...

    The parents are 100 percent to blame.

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  9. I agree with you on this one too. As a matter of fact, it's pretty disgusting that I've ran into a lot of adults who lack even basic nutritional knowledge. A lot of people don't even seem to know (or care to find out) what is or is not good for their bodies and their children's bodies!!

    Good post, as usual :)

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  10. I agree with you. I just wrote about this for my blog tomorrow actually. Who buys the crap food? The parents! How can they not take the responsibility. I've worked at several schools and I have seen some real crappy lunches sent with the kids. My personal pet peeve is pop in the lunch but I understand others like it. However, I watch what they eat every day and watch them crash a couple of hours later from the sugar rush. It annoys me. I used to sit for this woman whose four year old would get sugar rushes from the horrible sugar drinks in the plastic bottles and he would hit and kick me. I guarantee that proper nutrition would have solved at least half of his problems.

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  11. I totally agree. It's one of the many important responsibilities that parents have; to teach their children how to make healthy choices. I know people who feed their kids junk for breakfast, or have bad habits and those bad eating habits are of course picked up by their kids. It's kind of sad. It's setting them up to have a hard time being healthy for the.rest.of.their.lives.
    No parent is perfect - like you said. But I think that effort is definitely required.
    Thanks for the thoughts. These are all things I need to think over as I get ready to have MY first :)

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  12. I completely agree with you! Like someone else said, the parents have a lack of knowledge on nutrition because they were probably never taught it, or they just don't care. I know lots of people/parents like that. You try to give them advice and they act like you know nothing. It just amazes me that they don't care what they are not only putting into there bodies, but their children's.
    This kinda has to go with the Army changing there basic training to help the new recruits coming in, since they all {most} have spent much of there childhood and teenage years sitting in front of video games or just TVs in general. It just drives me crazy.
    I say amen to those parents who TRY to do there, every little thing helps!

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  13. Oh my goodness, I TOTALLY AGREE with you. I love when I see the huge kid, eating a bag of chips while the parent is pushing the cart through the store. "Oh look the bag is empty, well we will just go down the candy aisle, leave the empty chip bag and grab a bag of candy." Seriously just saw this the other day. I asked how old the child was because they could barely fit in the seat of the cart. 3, yup 3 years old. I just could not believe it. This kid was 3 times the size of my almost 3 year old.
    It is bad enough when you are opening things in the store and eating them with no intention of paying for said product, but to be allowing this 3 year old to eat the CRAP, just rubbed me the wrong way.

    Sorry I went off in my comment, I will stop now. LOL

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  14. I like your opinions and even more I love to read them!

    I was reading a magazine on a long plane ride recently and there was this tidbit about a study and they found that the #1 vege tables for kids nowadays is french fries. Yes. French Fries. That is pretty bad that they even consider that a vegetable! Now let me say, I love french fries. But I don't feed that to my daughter and it is only the rare occasion that we even see french fries. I have a child who actually loves vegetables! She loves chocolate too, but she doesn't get that everyday :-)

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  15. While my parents didn't always feed me the healthiest foods out there, they didn't let me eat all the ice cream in the world. They also didn't shove food in my mouth if I started acting up, they either punished me or they showed me some good attention (unlike many parents these days). I knew better than to start bouncing off the walls because someone gave me a cookie or pitch a hissy fit because they didn't give me all the pop I wanted. I also realize every kid's different, my cousin has 2 kids, the oldest was real quiet and calm all the time, the younger one was a terror most of the time. As long as that pop you were refilling didn't have jack daniels inside of it as well, I think you're a great mom, trying to do the best thing for your kids, something many parents don't care to do (like the parents of the kid who was refilling his pop, or the overweight child).

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  16. Amen! DH and I both agree whole heartedly. Hell, mines only 4 months and I intend to ask the Dr when he might begin eating out of comfort and not truly hungry. I don't want my kids to have the problems I have. I'm also not feeding them any sweets (fruits included) for as long as I can because DH does NOT eat veggies. His mom only gave him crap and thank God for his metabolism. His sister is 17 and nearly 300lbs and his mom thinks it's just fine that she has "salad with her salad dressing" instead of the other way around!

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  17. I know this is not central to your topic, but ah well....

    As for milk, I serve goat milk in my house. 5 out of the 6 like it and suck it down. The last one is a hold out who will eat homemade pizza with homemade dough and homemade pizza sauce with sausage for a topping, but heaven forbid if you separate it into homemade flatbread with a sausage marinara sauce -- she won't touch it.

    Goat milk is expensive; I buy it for cereal (which we do once a week on Sunday) and baking. An additional plus side is that they bounce off the wall just a little less, like a drop from 75% to 72%, a difference only a mother would notice.

    My 2 cents.

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  18. I remember SOBBING at the dinner table when my mother would make me eat my vegetables, feign sickness and try to go to my room (as I was sent to my room whenever I was being bad...) but I always had to finish at least some of my veggies. Now I LOVE LOVE LOVE them!!! My mother is always shocked.

    I understand as well that there are medical reasons as to why some of these people are morbidly obese, however is there the support out there for these people who are overweight? Yes Healthcare is an issue there all in another topic of its own...

    People also don't know that how a food is cooked can completely change the nutritional value of it, like potatoes are a decent carb, but depending on the way they are cooked can completely remove a lot of the nutritional value.

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  19. And I forgot. Best wishes to dash-3.

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  20. I am TOTALLY with you on this. TOTALLY. WITHOUT.A.DOUBT.

    I am like you, IN MODERATION for everything. Yes, my kids eat candy, and they have fast food. But not every day, and not at their demand. I'm BLESSED that my son (age 6 and 43 lbs) prefers to have apple "fries" and white milk with his nuggets. His sister (age 9 and 53 lbs) eats the fries, but has chocolate milk (better than soda any day...she HATES soda, and bubble gum, and minty things - but that's a digression and topic for another day). My kids like fruit, lots of it, and fresh is best. They ASK for veggies for snacks. When I give them an option of fruit or crackers, they usually choose fruit.

    I make healthy meals, I've moved away from a lot of pre-packaged stuff (though I am addicted to the Steam-Fresh veggies from Birds Eye, lol). I DO limit the amount of candy and junk my kids eat. If they want candy, they will ASK how many pieces, because they know I will limit them to 2-3 (sometimes one, depending on the size).

    There is RARELY an excuse for obesity in childhood. I see obese parents claim their kid MUST have some kind of metabolism problem...the only problem they have is a parent who uses food as a crutch or reward, and is teaching their kids the same.

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  21. I'm with YOU!! I used to get SO pissed at paerents on those shows who say "My kid will only eat meat" and he's liek 3. THEN DON'T GIVE HIM MEAT!! He'll get hungry enough. Sure I threw fits when I was younge rto get sweets and other horrible snakcs, but I Never won. Eventually I realized that no one cared that I was throwing a temper tantrum and I moved on to play with my toys or whatever. What is WRONG with us these days?!

    PS: I don't remember if you're the one who says you don't have cable or not - but you need to look into the Jamie Oliver Food Revolution. It's AMAZING! It's online, too, if you're interested, but seriously - he's tryign to change the way schools serve foods and parents know how to cook for their kids better, etc. From this post, I'd say it's RIGHT up your alley today. ;-)

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  22. I agree with you! I think it's the parent/guardian's responsibility to monitor what children are eating. When I was younger, we ate junk foods too, but we were literally pushed outside to play, so we would play off that crap. And we ate relatively healthy foods, with veggies every night.

    I totally agree with the no soda thing. I wish that I hadn't been introduced to soda as a kid. And, soda in a bottle is just insane.

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  23. I agree too. We have a friend with a daughter the Captain's age (they're six days apart) and they complain she's a picky eater but I've seen her eat McFries, wash them down with Sprite from her dad's cup, and then go for the sugar cookies. Why would you want to eat a vegetable when you can eat that stuff? She's not overweight but I feel like I should add a "yet" to that. The Captain's diet is the weird one, with all the veggies and fruit. I know what you mean--the Captain's diet could be better, and I could set a bit better of an example (like maybe I could lose about 25 lbs) but we run around outside every day that it doesn't rain. I chase her around the house. I cook as much as I can, and keep meats as lean as I can. I'm not perfect, but I try.

    (and randomly, a friend of mine wrote about this on CNN's website the other day, and another one is in DC campaigning to get kids access to healthier meals at school. So other people agree, too).

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  24. I completely agree with you. It's really sad what parents will give their children and continue to contribute to their kids eating habits.

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  25. Honestly? I think it is child abuse.

    Like you said, a 4 year old can't drive to the store and get junk themselves. They don't know that milk is better for you than Mountain Dew. They don't understand that they need to go outside and play instead of sit on video games all day long.

    It is a failure (and inexcusable neglect) on behalf of the parent.

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  26. It's negligence. If I am obese.. then that's my business. But my kids... NO... I feel it's my job to get them to adult age in the most healthy condition (physically and mentally). Sure they have cookies and sweets but it's special not the norm.
    As for the coke... heck NO!

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  27. Thank you thank you thank you thank you.

    I'm going to second what d.a.r. said. It IS child abuse. It's when parents are too inconvenienced and self absorbed to actually care for and raise their children that it becomes a totally backwards relationship in which the parents are limp wristed children and the children end up being overweight walking mental and physical problems with behavior issues and poor leadership and independence, which all makes for poor models as adults as they grow up, inevitably raising their children the same way if they're not careful. If you want to see where a country is headed, look at the youth.

    There. My blunt two cents.

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  28. It's not child abuse. Child abuse is hurtful and dangerous and illegal.

    Teaching your kids to eat junk and be a couch potato is a personal choice and should not be illegal. Everyone has the opportunity to screw up their own kids in their own special way.

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  29. Maybe not child abuse, but child neglect. It's neglectful to allow (encourage) your kids to develop unhealthy habits that could drastically shortened and/or limit their lives.

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  30. Absolutely neglectful and irresponsible. This is one of the issues that Michelle Obama is trying to tackle. I hope she is able to make some notable progress.

    I really hope that school lunches receive a much needed makeover before my oldest starts elementary school. A lot of schools have removed their soda vending machines, so that's a small step in the right direction.

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  31. I think it's border-line child abuse. Not only are those kids unhealthy carrying around that extra weight, but socially it's more difficult for them too! Have you read any of the First Lady's work on helping kids to be healthier? It's really some pretty good stuff if you get the chance!

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