What our kids are eating today.
A typical morning for me starts off with a walk with my three dogs, where I can breathe in the fresh air and get a bit of exercise done before starting my day. The route that I frequent boasts a skate park where the regulars are teenagers, in particular boys.
This morning, I was rather mortified at the array of empty crisps packets, chocolate wrappers, fizzy pop bottles and packed sandwich wrappers that created a junk food carpet along the skate park. Not only was I horrified that kids could litter so casually, but what really dawned on me was that our kids today are not choosing to snack on the raw, healthy and nutritious groups of food and instead, they are drawn to the cheap, processed products for a quick pick me up, or even as a meal.
If you compare and contrast what our main supermarkets are charging for their healthy snacks, as opposed to their unhealthy; it is rather apparent as to why a large percentage of teenagers wouldn’t be enticed by the healthier options. For example, a standard pack of fruit salad in a leading supermarket will cost around £3, whereas deals and offers where you can pick and choose three bags of sweets will only cost a teenager £1. That incentive alone already hints that you’re getting a better deal out of your money.
However, back in 2014, Tesco banned any form of sweets and chocolate from their aisles for parents to avoid their children’s attempts at adding some unhealthy snacks into their trolley as a last minute purchase. This was in a bid to tackle child obesity.
To put it simply; junk food is more appealing because of its convenience, low price and taste, especially for teenagers and young children who aren’t always aware of the health consequences of their eating habits.
The daily consumption of junk food can be addictive and can lead to many complications such as, obesity, chronic illness and even depression. This habit can also have a significant effect on how our children are performing in school and extracurricular activities. The importance of what you put in your body could not be more apparent at this stage in a person’s life.
Energy, focus and concentration are all especially crucial during school, but the consumption of junk food and food groups with high level sugar completely reduce energy levels and the ability to fully concentrate. This then affects how they engage in physical activities as the lack of sufficient nutrients in junk food alters their performance.
Being on a sugar free and chemical free diet has drastically changed my health and well being, and cooking tasty, nutritious meals for my two boys allows me to know exactly what they’re consuming…well, when they’re in the house anyway. However, I do firmly hope that my way of eating will influence them to favour the natural and healthy groups of food when they’re not with me.