Tag Archives: schools

Solving America’s Health Problems With The Next Generation

A Special Guest Post By: Chris Steurer

As America continues to stay on top as one of the unhealthiest countries in the world, we are seeing a tremendous growth of obesity and weight issues among our adult population and children as well. INC.com has noted that “according to the Center for Disease Control, approximately 17% of all children in the U.S. are obese.” They are the future of our country, and they are looking bigger than ever before.

I don’t believe that short term solutions work very well for truly solving any problem, therefore, we must look to longer-term solutions that are responsible and sustainable now and into the future. The current children of America are the future of this country, and it is up to them to decide what will happen down the road. So why do we do such a poor job at teaching them healthy habits and such a good job at raising them to make bigger health mistakes than ourselves?

I’ve talked with my younger cousins, my friend’s kids, and other children and they excitedly tell me how much they love eating fast food and playing video games all day. It’s quite alarming if you think about it, our next generation seems likely to be worse off than we already are.

So, how can we fix the problem? It is known that prisons often serve better food than our public schools do. Children are eating at least one meal- five days out of the week- that is high in calories and low in essential nutrients that the body needs to stay fit and healthy. I am almost certain that many of them consume many more meals throughout the week that consist of fast food or other unhealthy meals. We teach children how to read, write, and do arithmetic in school, why can’t we teach them to eat healthier and stay more active as well?

At least one company has set out to do something about this problem. Revolution Foods is helping to bring access to nutrient rich meals that taste good to low-income schools. They have realized that by targeting schools with healthy food alternatives, they can help make the world a better and healthier place to live!

What other ideas do you have that could offer a long-term solution to getting America’s health back on track?

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Is The 21st Century Responsible For Obesity?

The lazy, overweight American

Is the new century helping us become lazier?

I hear so many people talk of how we were so thin years ago but so obese today. While it is true that there is more marketing and choices of food, human beings really have not changed all that much.

In fact, decades ago parents cooked with so much lard and an abundance of other unhealthy items that you would wonder how they ever lived past forty.

So I ask myself, “What has changed?” Diets and depravation have been around forever, so clearly they can’t be the causation of this epidemic? The economy is in the toilet now, yet even during the great depression most people were still thin.

I really believe that we are now taught that you can have as much as you want and you can have it whenever you want it.

Children overeating

How much is to much?

We now have the days of tons of marketing to children. Then there are the electric carts in the grocery store that are almost always filled with obese people. Please don’t get me wrong; if they need the carts, then we should have them. It is just the question of why we have gotten so big that we need them to begin with.

What happened to physical exercise? I mean children still go to gym class don’t they? Oops, I forgot that many states have cut that from their budgets. Well, at least they can go home and chat online for most of the day with their friends. Of course the sedentary lifestyle that comes with that could be another answer.

So what can we all do? Should we buy those weird looking people movers called “The Segway” in order to get from place to place? After all, Steve Wozniak of Apple drives around on one and he doesn’t have a weight problem, does he?

Biking is no longer needed thanks to Segways

Are segways the death to physical fitness?

The point that I am really trying to lead to is that we have been taught to eat much greater proportion sizes whenever we want to and then to live a life as sedentary as possible.

If this is how most adults today are conducting their everyday life, then how are they supposed to teach their children to be any better? If we look at the statistics and rising health costs, we could have the greatest threat to mankind since the creation of the atomic bomb.

So, my recommendation is to get out there and do something. Just one small thing. One extra step. Pick up a Jillian Michaels video if your afraid to go to the gym. Get into P90X or some other great exercise product so you can just take a little time a day to get some progress made. Just do something!

The next time you’re on the second floor of a building, take the stairs up and down. Forget the dreaded elevator lift, you will make everyone else riding the elevator happy and you will start to feel better both physically and mentally.

We can succeed if we just take on little step forward at a time. It is up to us.

Don’t expect fantastic changes in a single day. Though a month or so down the line, you might be greatly surprised.

Physical Education – Where did it go?

When I was in school, we had P.E. every day. I can still remember how much of a pain it was to run the mile at a time. No matter what, we would not stop running around for an hour each day. Additionally, the school day was broken up by recess — more running around to build the sound body for the sound mind. All that appears to be stopping.

I’m from Illinois, one of the only states that requires physical education for all grades K-12. Most states only require one year of high school P.E., if any. However, I’m concerned because there have been talks about cutting P.E. classes due to budgetary contraints. Some schools in Chicago are even cutting Junior Varsity sports. Eliminating Physical Education can mean cutting the little amount of physical activity kids have these days.

Obesity in children is at the highest it has ever been. The increase of high fructose corn syrup in their diet is a major factor, but the lack of physical activity is a problem as well. With computers and social networking, kids are living a more and more sedentary lifestyle. So if P.E. & recess both disappear, then children will have no reason to move and ultimately suffer. I’m not saying it’s the only cause, but losing P.E. doesn’t help.

If the schools cut out physical education, what is the real cost long-term cost? Wouldn’t it save money in the long run to make sure our children are playing and exercising? If we allow our kids to be deprived of physical activity, then aren’t we responsible for their resulting obesity?

Bring back P.E. Bring back recess. Bring back sports programs. We owe it to the kids.

-Barry Roskin-Blake

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