Having a Fat Kid Doesn't Weigh on Parent's Mind – and other health news

by DavalosMcCormack on December 11, 2007

Having a Fat Kid Doesn’t Weigh On Parent’s Mind

When we saw the story, we had to write the headline. It was just too tempting to resist. And like Oscar Wilde said, I can resist anything except temptation.

But what about the study you are asking. Good question. The researchers at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital did a national poll and found that more than 40 percent of parents, whose children are obese, describe their children as “just about the right weight”.

Now that’s not a misprint. These kids are obese. Not just overweight. Yet mum and dad apparently think that’s just fine with them. Which may be due to the fact that their parents are probably pushing the heavy end of the scale themselves. Only around ten percent of parents with obese kids said they were very worried about their kids weight and health.

The biggest problem with the lack of awareness of the other 40 percent of parents is that if they don’t see there’s a problem, they won’t do anything to try and change things. And for the kids, that can mean a lifetime battling weight problems and weight-related health issues. Not much fun.

Having a Hoe Reduces Lung Cancer Risk.

Now I know all you hip hop fans will use that headline as vindication for rap lyrics. But this is hoe, as in a garden tool. The study found that eating four or more servings of green salad a week, and working in the garden once or twice a week (with the aforementioned hoe) can reduce your risk of lung cancer, regardless of whether you are a smoker or not.

That’s great news for people who have gardens. But does that mean the rest of us are doomed to cough up our lungs? Fortunately no. It’s just the researchers way of saying that if you eat your greens, and get a little bit of exercise along the way, it’s good for your body.

Of course you could just reduce your risk of lung cancer, by stopping smoking too. That would be even more effective.

Grab That Ball, Drop that Cigarette

And speaking of smoking. Those clever folk at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania (try putting that in a sports-team chant!) found that high school students who take part in sports or physical activity are much less likely to smoke than their classmates.

Now it may be the old “jocks” versus “jerks” divide. It may be that student athletes don’t want to reduce their ability to do endurance events by smoking. Or it may be students who are busy doing one positive activity simply don’t have time to go off and indulge in another, negative, one.

But in the end does it really matter. Give the kid a javelin and they won’t pick up a pack of ciggies. But then you’ll have a kid with a spear wandering around campus. Do you really feel safer with that?

Salad Days Encourage Healthier Children

Remember the Kevin Costner movie, “Field of Dreams” and the line “if you build it he will come”. Well, turns out you could use a similar mantra for kids and fruits and veg.

A study out of UCLA found that elementary school children are much more likely to increase the amount and variety of fruits and vegetables they eat if the school provides a lunch salad bar.

Amazing! You mean if you put fruits and veg out there that the kids will eat it! Hey, now don’t become a smart ass. The truth is lots of schools have struggled with ways to get kids to eat more fruits and veg so if those nice people at UCLA have found a way to get kids to eat a healthier diet, then god bless ‘em.

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