Eng 122 English Composition 11
November 19, 2012
What are the Causes and Effects of Childhood Obesity? How can they best be addressed? Childhood obesity has become a big important issue over the years. This issue should be addressed immediately. The problems seem to be the food that the children and adolescents eat and a little to no physical activity. Many children lead sedentary life styles at school and home. At school, they sit in classes all day with little or no physical activity and they eat non-nutritious lunches and snacks. At home, they sit in front of television for hours, play video games, stay on the computer for hours and also eat non-nutritious foods and snacks. However, the focus for this paper will be on the schools and their role in this problem, so the question is: Do the schools have a responsibility to help combat childhood obesity? Yes, they certainly do because my claim is that the school system shares some responsibility for the childhood obesity. The foods that they serve are not nutritious, the snacks that are available are full of sugar and fats and their physical education programs need to be revamped or they actually should offer a physical education program. The schools role could be pivotal in helping to combat childhood obesity, but it is not because they are not doing any thing to help combat the problem. The role that they play is helping to create the problem through their lunches, snacks and their lack of physical education programs. The children spend most of their day in school, at least seven hours, so the schools should offer nutritious lunches, snacks and good physical education programs to help with this epidemic of childhood obesity that can lead to so many medical problems that can exist on into adulthood. Children and adolescents have become affected by being obese with all types of medical problems. The information from Physical Activity and Childhood Obesity: Strategies and Solutions for schools and parents states that “Today more than 23 million U.S. children and adolescents are either obese or overweight. Being overweight during childhood increases the risk of developing diseases such as high cholesterol, hypertension, respiratory ailments, orthopedic problems, depression and type 2 diabetes” (Green, Riley, Hargrove, 2012 , pg 915). This information is important and relevant to my research because it shows the number of children that is obese or overweight. It also shows the medical ailments and diseases that come from being obese or overweight. The problem is when it comes to childhood obesity in the schools; they share in the responsibility of helping to create obese children and the way the school’s share in this problem is that their school lunches are not nutritious. In the Journal of Human Resources, Schanzenbach stated that “The role of school food environment in addressing children’s overweight has gotten increased policy attention. In 1995, after research showed that many school lunches failed to meet nutrition requirements, Congress passed the Schools Meals Initiative for Healthy Children”. (Schanzenbach, 2009, pg 696). This is significant because this information shows that this issue is so important that the government have done research on childhood obesity. They have passed a policy to help to combat the problem within the school systems by passing the schools meals initiative. “The schools meals Initiative was a new policy that required food served to meet one-third of the child recommended daily allowance (RDA) of calories, protein, calcium, iron, and vitamins A and C, and for no more than 30 percent of calories to come from fat” (schanzenbach, 2009, pg 696). This information is explaining the schools meals initiative policy that was passed by the...