One of the major impacts on the way in which children are eating themselves into ever more overweight bodies is in the trend by fast food restaurants to promote super size meals as being better value than regular size meals.
This is an angle that they know will be hard to ignore by today's cost conscious consumers and one that appeals to the sensible logic that a bigger meal costs less pound for pound than its smaller alternative.
The unfortunate spin off from this marketing ploy is while profits increase, so are the waistlines of the people eating the food.
Another problem associated with the attractiveness of these enormous meals is that when children see the how great they look in the advertising banners in the restaurant, they immediately point to them and it's a case of,
"Mommy I want that one!"
Unfortunately, mommy will often say "Yes," to stave off the potential for an argument or even a full blown tantrum in the restaurant if the child does not get its own way!
In a harsh world, harsh choices have to be made and in this case, it's either give in or simply stop taking the children to these restaurants.
Convenient Diet Alternatives
Assuming mom has enough authority to actually prevent the children visiting fast food restaurants altogether, then there are some alternatives that can be implemented at home to try and reverse the super-sizing of the kids that the fast food industry seems hell bent on promoting.
Making diets convenient so that busy moms can cope better with the demands of the dietary needs of their children is a good thing in some respects, although from the perspective of the nutritional aspect of the children's diet the way in which the vast majority of convenient "ready" meals are formulated to maximize profit, not consumer or child health is a cause for concern.
Here is how the food industry takes ever more of your money:
- Marketing ready meals as healthy (when they are anything but healthy)
- Promoting ready meals as a cheap alternative to home cooked meals
- Making ready meals attractive to moms who don't want to spend time cooking meals
- Advertising their products heavily on TV during prime time shows where both adults and kids will be watching
- Promoting a peer pressure environment where some kids eat these meals so their friends will copy them and want then too
But nobody is forced to eat this way and indeed it really only takes some common sense education to break the spell that the food industry has cast on consumers.
Home Cooked Meals
Anyone with enough power of will can break away from the need to go for convenience over sensibility. Why it is that this is something that very few people actually want to hear is something that is truly baffling. But has our way of life changed so dramatically from how it was 30 years ago that mom's really don't have the time or the inclination to prepare and cook a traditional family meal any more?
It used to be that cooking was a pastime of great interest and enjoyment for many people. The author of this article loves to cook and create interesting and flavorsome meals for the benefit of himself and his own family. Only the best fresh ingredients are used and there is not a packet or a can anywhere in sight! This is truly healthy cooking and when you are in total control over what goes into your family's meals then you can make them as tasty and interesting as they are healthy.
This is the way to combat childhood obesity and while you're about it you can also work on adult obesity at the same time. If more consumers turned their backs on processed meals full of additives and belly swelling ingredients and embraced the enjoyable and fascinating world of home cooking, the manufacturing companies that male up the food industry in general would have to take notice.
They would certainly need to counter the trend with a healthier product that can be incorporated in that home cooking regime. Because if they don't, then their businesses will suffer while the population slowly gets healthier, lighter and happier!