Tuesday, 18 January 2011

New Diet Regime in US schools: Pros and cons

A new diet regime is being introduced by Government in US schools to combat obesity.
Obesity is reaching epidemic proportions in US. And childhood obesity is all the more dangerous. About 80% of obese children grow up to be obese adults at 25 years of age.70% of obese children (5-17 years old) had at least one cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk and 39% had two or more CVD risk factors. High blood pressure, high cholesterol and Type II diabetics are some other side effects to name a few. Read more about this in my Technorati Article http://technorati.com/lifestyle/article/healthy-food-in-schools-usda-takes1/

There is also a strange stat about Obesity in US. Childhood obesity is more prevalent among the poor. Obesity also has racial discriminations. One among seven pre-school aged children among low income group is obese. The Center for disease Control data also shows that Blacks have 51% higher rate of obesity and Hispanics have 21% higher rate of obesity compared to Whites. In 2008, obesity prevalence was highest among American Indian or Alaska Native (21.2 percent) and Hispanic (18.5 percent) children, and lowest among white (12.6 percent), Asian or Pacific Islander (12.3 percent), and black (11.8 percent) children.

Complex as the situation is, it demands an in-depth analyses before any solution can be effective. However, all efforts are welcome. And the Governments initiative in raising the fund money for school meals and lying down a plan to offer them a healthier meal deserves real praise.
Children spend a lot of their time in schools.And once they are school age, they replace a major portion of their allegiance to their family by an allegiance to their school.They love to feel a part of their school and what is taught in school have a great impact in their life. That’s why perhaps we try to find the best schools for them. There is sure a much greater probability of their accepting a new food pattern in school than if it is suddenly introduced at home.
But then if home food doesn't change its pattern, then the Government's efforts we turn just futile. If what is taught and practiced about food and Nutrition at school be completely contradicted by parents at home, then the chances of success is remote.
So what is needed is an equal awareness among parents and a support from home.

Again, how much ever the parents and teachers may try to persuade, food must taste good to be liked. That is some serious business. To keep healthy food tasty, think beyond your limits. Vegetable and fish are part of most Asian meals. Vegetables can be prepared in hundreds of tasty ways. They just needn't be taken raw in salads or boiled and dipped in some unhealthy sauce. Think beyond your fast food line of thinking and I am sure there are plenty of tasty options in most cultures that also keep your diet balanced.

But food habits or change in it is not enough to fight this epidemic. Plenty of exercise and an active life style is the actual cure. Less of video games and more of field play can bring about a real change. Again, only schools can't bring about these changes. Awareness among parents and their willingness to actively participate in this war against the epidemic named Obesity is the actual need of the hour.

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