Having worked with children for more than 20 years, I’ve seen a big shift in eating habits. Kids went from home cooked, fresh meals to eating processed foods and fast foods, junk food and sugary treats (all day long). Do you believe this has contributed to the obesity rate?
Absolutely, we have replaced the time that we would prepare meals with over booking our children and ourselves with activities. We tend to cut corners on nutrition because we are too tired to even think about preparing a meal after we have completed our daily task from our overbooked schedule. We need to make it mandatory to plan out healthy meals and snacks, quick options are okay as long as the ingredients for the most part are not processed.
Do you believe that electronics also contribute to the rate of obesity in our nation, and a lack of exercise?
Yes, electronics have caused our children to remain inside more than they used to, causing them to be sedentary. Limiting electronics and carving out daily time to be outside is a must. The generation of children who play outside all day is slowly fading away, causing us to be less active and creating major metabolic concerns like type 2 diabetes, obesity, high body fat percentage, etc.
How can we motivate parents to take action: to feed their children healthier foods again and to spend more time outdoors?
Through education, parents can find themselves in pure survival mode and if they understand the ramifications of their actions or lack of action, they may make some changes. Creating small healthy habits like cooking more at home, daily outside time, etc. is a small way to create a big change.
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Dr. Kantor’s greatly anticipated new children’s book, The Green Box League of Nutritious Justice, is now available. Be sure to order this highly reviewed book, filled with healthy living tips for the whole family. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Children’s Miracle Network.