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The weight of our country

by ANDREA FRENCH Section Editor

One of the biggest problems with the children in America is obesity, though Americans in general are faced with being overweight everyday. Children are such a primary focus in this issue because they are the future of this country as adults, and that is why we are trying to show them the proper way to eat now.

Many schools throughout the entire country are trying to implement new healthier options to offer children at lunch. Over the years that I have been in school, there have been significant changes in what cafeterias offer. About eight years ago, the school lunches used to sell all different kinds of tasty cakes, cookies, and brownies, accompanied by an abundant assortment of chips. Since then, all of that has been removed and replaced with low fat packaged cookies and whole wheat chips.

Adults agree that children should eat healthier, but their methods, I think, are where it goes wrong.  Being in the high school, students are old enough to know what to eat and what not to eat, but the younger children need a little guidance.

“Maybe if schools taught kids about some of the great tasty foods they can eat that are also good for their body, they would chose that over the junk food,” says sophomore Taylor Zeni.

What is most frustrating about this situation is that officials think that if they remove these types of unhealthy foods from the cafeteria, that students will be healthier.  However,  the children that are overweight and eat a lot of junk food are not primarily getting it from school.  More than likely, they eat this kind of food at home. Instead of taking all junk foods from schools, they should be talking to the parents.

Students spend about eight hours a day at school of which 30 minutes are for lunch, which leaves about 16 other hours where they are at home on the weekdays. It is quite obvious that these overweight children are eating junk foods at home, so why should the healthy students who just wants a cookie not be able to have it?

The most frightening thing to think about in this situation is that these parents are going out and buying this food for their children. What the child eats at home is entirely dependent upon the parents, and when the parents are demanding healthier lunches at school, they are contradicting themselves.

Maybe some school officials should consider putting some healthy foods in the cafeteria that actually look appetizing. I remember being in elementary school and thinking, ‘I would never eat that’ to the majority of the browning fruit and vegetables. Healthy foods have the potential to taste good, and not all children these days know that.

“It makes me sad that our school can’t just have fresh apple slices or watermelon slices that the kids would eat. They are not given a healthy option at lunch,” says sophomore Catarina Santo.

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