Are you feeding your child future heath problems?
According to a study by the Pediatric Nutrition Surveillance System, childhood obesity rates didn't change from 2008 through 2011 in Hawaii, where more than 40% of children entering kindergarten are overweight or obese in some rural and/or low-income communities.
"Obese children are more likely to become obese adults and suffer lifelong physical and mental health problems," the CDC warned. "Obesity is associated with high cholesterol, high blood sugar, asthma, and mental health problems."
Last week I saw a food stamp recipient with an obese child cashing out over $150 worth of soda, bottled juice, toaster pastries, pudding, candy, ice cream and more; clearly, some food stamp recipients are failing to optimize their resources.
If that child is eating two toaster pastries, and drinking one cup of bottled juice for breakfast - that one meal alone consists of over 50g of sugar! I wouldn't be surprised if that child consumes over 200g of sugar daily!
The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends that most American women should limit their sugar intake to 6 teaspoons (24g), and most American men should limit their sugar intake to 9 teaspoons (36g). Although the AHA didn't make a recommendation for children, I would assume that their sugar intake should be lower.
The CDC suggests that parents have a doctor or nurse measure their children’s weight, height and body mass index routinely. They also suggest that parents serves fruits and vegetables and other nutritious foods for meals and snacks, instead of junk food. Click here to read their full report on childhood obesity.
Image Credit: Pediatric Nutrition Surveillance System, 2008-2011. *Represents statistically significant annual decrease or increase in obesity.
CDC.gov | August 2013 Progress on Childhood Obesity | Retrieved August 10, 2013
ncbi.nlm.nih.gov | Overweight and at-risk for overweight among Hawai'i public school students entering kindergarten, 2002-2003. | Retrieved August 10, 2013
Heart.org | Sugars and Carbohydrates | May 6, 2013