Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Rant #670: Junk Food Gold To Kids

Everybody seems to be on the healthy eating bandwagon.

"Eat healthy, and you will live longer," say some, and perhaps it is true.

But for kids, I really don't think they care about such stuff. They will eat whatever they like.

"Start kids off in their lives with healthy eating, and you will set them on the right path," say some, and perhaps it's true.

But my generation filled up on Devil Dogs and Twinkies, and it didn't seem to hurt us too badly.

But some continue to say that eating healthy is the right way to go, and schools can be a big help in fighting off the fat.

A new study now says that roughly half of U.S. elementary school kids can still buy junk food at their schools, even after repeated mandates to remove this stuff from these centers of learning.

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago said such horrid things as cookies, cakes and chips are still sold through many school cafeterias and vending machines, even if they are not served during lunchtime.

Sure, rising obesity in children is a reason to rethink what we feed our kids, but schools really shouldn't be held responsible for kids getting fat.

That's like saying that McDonald's is responsible for creating Chubbsy Ubbsies across the country, and although some have even taken fast food providers to court over this, the cases are always thrown out.

You have to have the mindset to eat healthy, and that starts at home.

And you know what? All this talk of healthy eating is fine in my book, but generally, people don't want to eat healthy. The healthy stuff should be available, but you can't force any food provider outside of your own home to regulate what your kids eat.

Again, it has to start in the home.

And when I was growing up, everything literally was on the table. You could eat salads--and I did--but I loved my Yodels and Oreos, too.

Yes, I am overweight right now, and I still love my cookies. And that is my fault, because although my eating habits have changed over time as I've gotten older, it's my decision to eat like I do.

But did it hurt me as a kid? No, I don't think so.

My wife watches herself like a hawk, and I am very proud of her. She looks 20 years younger than she really is, because she does what she has to do to be fit, including exercises regularly. She is beautiful, has a great figure, and rarely noshes.

I choose to nosh.

My son, 16 years of age, eats everything and then some, and he is as skinny as a pencil.

You have to want to eat healthy, not literally have it forced down your throat.

And you can't expect schools to fully toe the line.

We are very much into the blame game in this society, and schools are likely targets for lots of blame on a variety of subjects.

But if you want your kids to eat healthy, give them the broccoli at home, not a Yankee Doodle.

And stop expecting schools to regulate what your kids eat.

They can help, but ultimately, the burden falls on the home, exactly where the burden should be.

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