Why Are There So Many Fat Kids?

Ok…I am really upset, sad, pissed off and outright confused right now.  As I enjoy spending time with my family doing random things like playing baseball, running around the park, swimming or whatever, I am seeing more and more kids that are ridiculously overweight. WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON!!!!!?  Well of course I know, these kids are eating more than they are burning off, but why the hell is this happening.  How does a parent allow their kid to be obese?  I really don’t know how to wrap my head around it.  Am I being totally off base here?  I am obviously somebody that does not judge anybody by their weight or for any other reason.  That is why I started Novato Adventure Boot Camp in the first place, because I wanted to help more people be healthy and lose weight in a much grander scale than just doing one on one personal training in Novato.

According to the Center for Disease Control, obesity has doubled in kids aged 2-5 since 1980.  OBESE 2-5 YEAR OLDS!!!!!!!  In kids ages 6 – 11 the rate has over tripled to over 19%  Now I completely understand that there is the possibility for kids to be physically sick which causes there obesity, but clearly this isn’t the case.

I think that there are several factors that go into this huge problem.

1. The kid’s parents are obese – We do what we know….these kids have the same exact eating and exercise habits as their parents leading to overeating and under-exercising.  Does that make it OK?  Is this child abuse?  Would it be any different if we overdosed our children on cough syrup?  You might say, “Yes Carlos, but they could die if they overdosed on cough syrup.”  Well, you don’t think they will die from diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, etc.?  Or here is another example, what if a parent didn’t feed their child very often and they went to school severely malnurished, underweight and pale.  Correct me if I am wrong, but don’t you think that a teacher may make it a point to figure out what is going on.  Why won’t they do this with an obese child?

2. Marketing from huge food manufacturers are deceiving – There is so much crappy food out their that the food makers are making to look healthy.  They throw garbage on the front of the box that says “GREAT SOURCE OF VITAMIN D” or some BS like that (see below).  Then a parent that isn’t savvy in this type of marketing buys the food and feeds it to their kids thinking that it is doing something great for their kid while it is really hurting them in the long run.

To the left you see Pop Tarts, which on the front says, “Good Source of 7 Vitamins and Minerals” and “Made With Real Fruit”.  ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME!  Every time you toast up a package of these sugary treats (two Pop Tarts) your kid will be eating 400 calories, 38 grams of sugar, 76 grams of carbohydrates.  For one meal it will surely make your kid hungry in about 15 minutes.  Now lets look at the picture below at what 400 calories of another meal would consist of:  6oz. chicken breast, 2 Tbs. barbecue sauce, 1 cup of mixed vegetables, 1/2 cup of brown rice, a small green salad and 2 tbs. of  reduced fat oil and vinegar dressing.  Now I know that we aren’t comparing breakfast with breakfast but hopefully you get the point.

To the right you see Reeses Puffs cereal.  Right at the top it says that it is whole grain and has 12 vitamins and minerals as well as good source of calcium.  I am not going to do all of the details with this one, but let me tell you…it is garbage to feed our children.

3. Kids aren’t active like they used to be – I remember when I was a kid my mom would send me outside to play and told me not to come back until it was dinner time.  My brother and I ran around with our neighbors for hours playing kick the can, riding our bikes, wrestling in the grass or whatever.  Now the entertainment is movies and the latest version of whatever video game is hot at the time.

I can go on ranting about this all day, but the fact of the matter is that it is evident everywhere we go that our kids are getting fatter by the day.  We can either do something about it by eating better and get out and moving more (perhaps a family walk around the neighborhood), or we can do nothing and continue to watch our kids suffer the life of being sick and fat.  We have a responsibility to care for our children and part of that is making sure they are healthy.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this, so leave a comment below and let me know what you think.

Have a healthy day!