THERE IS AN EPIDEMIC OF DIABETES AND OVERWEIGHT CHILDREN IN AMERICA.
- Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years
- About 208,000 Americans under age 20 are estimated to have diagnosed diabetes, approximately 0.25% of that population.
- In 2008—2009, the annual incidence of diagnosed diabetes in youth was estimated at 18,436 with type 1 diabetes, 5,089 with type 2 diabetes.
As a father I pride myself on encouraging a healthy approach to life for my daughter. Teaching a child to eat and live healthy not only encourages good health but also better focus, sleep patterns, social skills and confidence. Through various methods I have made it habit for Kiara to eat healthier foods and exercise regularly. There are a lot of fun ways to accomplish this which I will write about separately. Being a health conscious Father I was appalled to find that Kiara’s school was providing potato chips, ice cream, juice and other sugary snack and beverages. Special occasions such as holiday parties I obviously can agree should be the exception as it is in life but to offer with no limitations on a daily basis is beyond unacceptable. I was even more offended to find out that Kiara’s aftercare program was providing Pop-Tarts as a snack. These poisonous delights contain 30 grams of sugar per Pop-Tart ! That is almost 3 x’s the amount of sugar that the World Health Organization recommends for children which is 12g a day for children, 20g for Women and 36g for men (see link below). Just because it says made with whole grains does not make it healthy.
Of course there is a difference between natural and added sugars, no one is disputing the benefits of fruit but even that should be controlled. To be very blunt if a parent chooses to put their child at an extra risk for health issues such as diabetes and being over weight, it is their poor choice to make and live with not the schools ! It is not fair to us parents who want the best for our children ! Diabetes and weight issues are a major epidemic in this country…….schools should not be adding to this problem! A school should be a safe haven for children to learn and be free of unnecessary health risks. These foods and beverages should be banned in every school and aftercare program in America.
I beg you all not just for Kiara but all our children. A healthier school leads to a healthier community.