Let’s Move Instead
North Carolina Central University
Some experts suggests that obesity is negatively affecting people due to unhealthy diets and lack of exercise, by following First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” program, which includes preparing more meals at home, eating more fruits and vegetables, and exercising daily for at least sixty minutes, America will be on the road to raising healthier and stronger children. There has been a thirty one percent increase in the amount of calories consumed by children, than the intake amount that were consumed forty years ago. Sixty minutes is the minimum amount of playing time children need in order to “grow up to a healthy weight”. Thirty years ago, lifestyles were lived in a way that parents and children were lived in a way that parents and children were “kept at a healthy weight”. Children today are eating nearly three snacks a day, adding “an additional 200 calories a day”. It is encouraged that children eat a minimum of five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Children that are obese are at risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, hardening of arteries, Type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, and asthma are only a few health complications a child can experience by being overweight. Children adopt a “structure for eating” when meals are scheduled. In addition to eating healthier, exercise decreases the chances of weight related disease. With all the bad that comes from being obese, the question at hand would be how to fix it? Minor changes in the lifestyles parents and children live conquering the challenge of childhood obesity will be a simple task.
In the last forty years, the number of obese children has gone up dramatically. CQ Researcher reporter Barbara Mantel states, “In 2001, the nation’s Surgeon General proclaimed obesity an epidemic” (2010, P 797). Of the children that are overweight, 35.9% are African American (Ogden, Carroll, Curtin, Lamb, & Flegal, 2010, p. 1). Since I am an African American, these numbers concern me. I live with both of my parents, who both work busy full time jobs, leaving me to feed myself most nights. For three days I made a food log of what that I ate, one meal at Cookout totaled 1,455 calories. Some experts suggests that obesity is negatively affecting people due to unhealthy diets and lack of exercise, by following First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” program, which includes preparing more meals at home, eating more fruits and vegetables, and exercising daily for at least sixty minutes, America will be on the road to raising healthier and stronger children.
Obesity in America has risen 11 percent between 1991 and 2003 in children five to eleven (James, 2003), so it has been recognized as one of the most pressing health threats to children across the county. In 2004, the childhood obesity rate was 17.1% in the United States. (Mantel, 2010) In lower income communities, rates for obese children are 1.7 times higher than higher income communities. (Food Research and Action Center, 2010 P 1) Furthermore in 2013 Gallup researchers suggest, “Income has more to do with obesity risk in the United States than food deserts do.” (Chan, P 2) Food deserts is explained to be “limited access to grocery stores” (Chan, 2013, P 2). Families who receive food stamps are more likely to buy in bulk, ensuring that their family will have enough food to get them through the month, not considering the quality of the food. “Buying in bulk encourages unhealthy eating habits” say Lisa Renn, an accredited dietician (Vinales, 2012, P. 1). “Garry Egger, a Professor of Lifestyle Medicine at Southern Cross University and co-author of Planet Obesity: How we are eating ourselves and the planet to death”, stated to CHOICE that eating more comes with the lowering of food prices and still getting more food (Vinales, 2012, P. 1). Purchasing in bulk increases