Eating healthy is becoming more vital for Americans. Obesity rates have gone up dramatically in the last twenty years (the fattest state being Mississippi at 34 percent). Not only monitoring what we are eating, but what are kids are eating, has never been more important. Portion sizes are getting bigger, sodas are bigger and more sugary and snacking is at an all-time high. Why is this? The true reason is not quite known, but I have a few guesses:
With increased technology, the need to be mobile is decreasing:
Smart phones, laptops, Xbox, tablets, readers, TV, Netflix, etc. there is no end to the services that keep our behinds glued to their seats. When I was young, if you wanted to watch a movie, you had to wait for the weekend. So in order to get that stimulus to my imagination, my friend Lee and I would play all sorts of games in my back yard. If I wanted to get somewhere, I had to walk or ride my bike. Furthermore, I was a participant in youth-league baseball and basketball.
Food Is Getting Colder:
Because people are more on-the-go, fast food consumption is going up dramatically. Not only that, but lunches are frozen and heated in a microwave. Those frozen, and fast, foods are high in fat, low in nutrition and have no benefit. Despite all those facts, meals are becoming faster, less nutritious, less varied and more fattening. For these reasons, as well as people’s inactivity, people are getting fatter.
TV Is Raising Our Kids:
Kids, ages eight to eighteen, are spending an average of four hours watching TV a day, then an additional two hours on the computer (that’s 42 hours a week). Kids need to get out and play. I have listened to NPR, and other news shows in the last few years, and I have heard that parents aren’t allowing their kids to play outside as much anymore. The common excuse that I heard was that playing outside could hurt the kids. Although I understand the sentiment, daily physical activity is a must for kids; let them play.
Nutrients Aren’t Being Consumed:
Older men are often plagued by two common problems (ED and prostate cancer). A few years ago, I was under the impression that getting both of those afflictions was like a game of Russian Roulette (meaning, you have no control whether or get it or not). This couldn’t be further from the truth. Granted, I’m not saying I have the cure for those two ailments, but I do know ways that could prevent it from ever happening. How? Eat vegetables and fruits. That’s right, if you eat 5-8 servings of vegetables and fruits every day, you will put yourself in the best position to prevent ED and prostate cancer.
How You Can Help:
So, how is it that something so simple can prevent two of the most embarrassing things that men have to deal with? Eating fruits and vegetables keep the blood from thinning (because your veins aren’t obstructed by plaque in the veins caused by fatty food and inactivity). So, you need to keep a healthy weight. With obesity usually comes diabetes. With diabetes comes nerve damage which can cause ED. Next, you need to exercise regularly. Aerobic exercise is one of the best prevention methods. Also, you ought to curtail, or stop, your consumption of alcohol. Heavy alcoholism interferes with male hormones that keep the body functioning normally. An imbalance of those hormones results in ED (that imbalance is caused by heavy drinking). Lastly, don’t use anabolic steroids. There is a common joke that goes along with people who use anabolic steroids. Well, guess what? It’s true.
With just a little injection of common sense, Americans can start to buck the obesity trend we have going. As we do so, we will increase our quality of life. Furthermore, we will increase the quality of life that our children will have. As of right now because of childhood obesity, this generation’s children aren’t expected to outlive their parents; think about it.
Jordan Freis is a freelance writer for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers helps people determine if an online education is right for them and helps them understand what kinds of online colleges are available to help them reach their goals.