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You are here : home > Food and Nutrition > Poor Eating Habits > Children and Junk Food

Children and Junk Food

Children find themselves amidst a complex society that is undergoing breathtaking changes. Concepts, relationships, lifestyles are metamorphisised to accommodate the new jet-setting age. Food is no exception. Healthy nutritious foods have been replaced by the new food mantra - JUNK FOOD! Junk food comprises of anything that is quick, tasty, convenient and fashionable. It seems to have engulfed every age; every race and the newest entrants are children. Wafers, colas, pizzas and burgers are suddenly the most important thing. The commonest scenario is a child who returns from school and plonks himself in front of the television, faithfully accompanied by a bowl of wafers and a can of cola. Children suddenly seem to have stepped into a world of fast foods and vending machines, totally unaware of the havoc they are creating for themselves. 

The years between 6-12 are a time of steady growth; good nutrition is a high priority. Children must know that what they eat affects how they grow, feel and behave. Changes in our society have intensified the need for food skills, to the extent that they need to become a part of the child's basic education for good health and survival. The vast majority of working mothers with school age children are laboured with exhausting commutes, upswings in the households, and stress, leading to a situation where parents get to spend limited time with their children. Traditional food skills are not passed on automatically from parent to child. Most people have forgotten that the primary reason for eating is nourishment. In the not so distant past, food was treated with reverence because of its life sustaining quality. Enjoying a meal was sharing experience with the others. Today family dinners are rare. In many ways, our culture is structured to foster poor eating habits. Television commercials and supermarkets are propagating a wide variety of enticing junk foods, attractively packaged and often tagged with a tempting sop. We should be constructing an environment that protects our children. Instead we have a highly seductive environment that undermines eating habits. 

For children who have less vision of the heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure or diabetes that might befall them decades later, the tentacles of a junk food environment are virtually inescapable.  Studies reveal that as early as the age of 30, arteries could beginning clogging and lay the groundwork for future heart attacks. What children eat from puberty affects their risks of prostate and breast cancer.  Osteoporosis and hypertension are other diseases that appear to have their earliest roots in childhood when lifelong eating habits are being formed. Children are especially vulnerable. Poor diets can slow growth, decay new teeth, promote obesity and sow the seeds of infirmity and debilitating disease that ultimately lead to incurable disease and death or worse make life insufferable. 

Most of the times these junk foods contain colors that are laced with colors, those are often inedible, carcinogenic and harmful to the body. These foods and their colors can affect digestive systems, the effects of it emerging after many years. Studies have found that food coloring can cause hyperactivity and lapses of concentration in children. Children suffering from Learning Disabilities are often advised against eating food with artificial coloring. Chocolates, colas, flavored drinks and snack tit bits are full of artificial coloring. 

Not surprisingly, junk food not only has physiological repercussions, but also psychological ones - far reaching ones that affect the child's intellect and personalities. Coping intelligently with their dietary needs increases their self-esteem, and encourages further discovery. School days are full of educational challenges that require long attention spans and stamina. Poor nutritional habits can undermine these pre-requisites of learning, as well as sap the strength that children need for making friends, interacting with family, participating in sports and games or simply feeling god about themselves. 

Junk foods are often eaten in instead of regular food, an essential Indian diet that consists of wholesome chapatis and vegetables or snacks like upmas and idlis. Not surprisingly eating junk food leads to a sense of starvation both physically and mentally, as the feeling of satiation and contentment that comes after a wholesome meal is absent. There is simply no substitute for the feeling that descends, when you wake up and find that you are ready to take on the world and this primarily stems from GOOD HEALTH! There is no better time than now to build a supportive environment for nurturing our children and endowing them with a legacy of good health.
 

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Recent comments (114 comments)
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Comment: 
Name: Payal
Country: India

Must-needed article for the hour. I was little surprised to see the stats show more than 15% children are obese in the state of Karnataka. Junk food is the culprit! Parents do not pay much attention to eating healthy food. Actually I plan my meals for my kids and family. And I do pack healthy lunch for my kid to take it to Orchids School.
 
Name: Sarika Singha
Country: India

My 3 year old son is a very fussy eater and loves junk food. Eating out had become a problem during monsoons so I decided to cook up interesting dishes myself. I found interesting recipes in Femina. Like the one I made yesterday, Crisp tacos stuffed with tomato salsa and refried beans. My son loved it!
 
Name: Nedondra
Country: india

she is just too fat!!!
 
Name: Nedondra
Country: india

obesity, hipper, acting up in school.
 
Name: Lauren
Country: usa

man that was a good article. the person who wrote it should be proud.
 
Name: diana
Country: pakistan

is crazy
 
Name: daysi
Country: mexico

i think is a good story.
 
Name: candy
Country: nigeria

to much junk food is not good for your health
 
Name: hope
Country: australia

it was i nice story
 
Name: shalini
Country: india

was a good article revealing a hard truth. no doubt,junk food is affecting the health of children but only parents can help their children by maintaining balanced dietery plans.
 
Name: Chenise
Country: jamaica

junk food is not good for you, but cause kid's r who they r they will always luv there junk food no matter what and let me tell you maggots is found in kebab. ewwwww
 
Name: sakshum
Country: india

thats a great arcticle
 
Name: KRITHIKA
Country: india

thats a good artical
 
Name: junkie
Country: india

junk food is not good for you because it has lots of fat and sugar, which can cause heart attacks! not even junk food owns bud buds
 
Name: beeepobe
Country: india

f up motha fers
 
Name:
Country: Bolivia

 
Name: she is just to fat
Country: India

i
 
Name: she is just to fat
Country: India

i
 
Name: jenay
Country: U.S.A.

drink water
 
Name:
Country: Bolivia

 
Name: Fat Fat Fat
Country: Georgia

real fat can't stop eating junkfood fat ugly person
 
Name: Genesis
Country: Puerto rico

junk food causes intellect and personality. watch out!
 
Name: Dietician
Country: India

dear doc: read may articles on bad effects of junk food.as per defination of it. following is the question although the question is specific; you may please anwswer it in general does the variety of our chat food like ( bhel panipuri) fall in the category of junk food category ? please answer
 
Name: Kayla
Country: U.S.A.

junk food and fast food can cause my health risks. such as obesity!!. stop obestiy
 
Name: Nikki
Country: Ireland

you should cut down on the fat foods cause it isnt worth it in the end like look at oll the risk of junk food obesity diabetes n al


 

 
 
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