Tag Archives | Childhood Obesity

North Dakota Woman To Hand Out Anti-Obesity Flyers To Overweight Trick-Or-Treaters

halloweenBrilliant, asinine, or both? North Dakota’s Valley News Live reports on a regional Halloween controversy:

A local woman stated her intentions to take childhood obesity into her own hands during a Y-94 radio interview the morning of Oct. 29. She has decided to give a letter instead of candy to Halloween trick-or-treaters that she feels are “moderately obese.”

“I just want to send a message to the parents of kids that are really overweight… I think it’s just really irresponsible of parents to send them out looking for free candy just ’cause all the other kids are doing it,” says the author in a Y-94 morning radio interview. That’s where the letter first surfaced and started to spread through social media.

“I’m contributing to their health problems and really, their kids are everybody’s kids. It’s a whole village,” says the letter’s author in the interview.

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Should Parents Lose Custody Of Fat Children?

overweight child-resized-600If your twelve-year-old is a 300-pound diabetic, have you failed as a parent to the point that your child should be taken away for his or her own safety? Health experts at Harvard say yes, it’s time to get tough and start removing fat children from their homes. It boggles the mind that we live in an age in which this is a pressing issue. The Atlantic Wire reports:

As the Western world gets fatter and fatter, the solutions to slimming it down get ever more draconian. Today, a pair of Harvard scholars writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association advocate stripping away the custody rights of parents of super obese children.

“Despite the discomfort posed by state intervention, it may sometimes be necessary to protect a child,” said Lindsey Murtagh, a lawyer and researcher at Harvard’s School of Public Health. The study’s co-author, David Ludwig, says taking away peoples’ children “ideally will support not just the child but the whole family, with the goal of reuniting child and family as soon as possible.” Ludwig, an obesity specialist at Harvard-affiliated Children’s Hospital, said his eureka moment was when a 90-pound, 3-year-old girl entered his obesity clinic a number of years ago”:

Her parents had physical disabilities, little money and difficulty controlling her weight.

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When Body Fat Affects Report Cards

If you were an elementary school student, which would upset you more: being picked on as the fat kid in class or having the teacher mention it on your report card? The Chicago Tribune reports:

Elmhurst students have long been checked on how long it takes to run a mile or whether they can do a pushup. But another physical fitness assessment tool has some parents fuming — one that aims at finding out whether their kids are too hefty.

A child’s “body mass index,” a computation of body fat based on height and weight, was one of six tests used at Hawthorne Elementary School to determine the physical fitness grade on a student’s progress report.

But that practice ended abruptly Tuesday after about 25 parents met with school officials to express their displeasure with how the BMI data were being used. One mother broke into tears as she described how it affected her fourth-grade daughter.

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Obama Signs School Lunch Law

Looks like there’s going to be a lot of pudding trades with kids who bring bagged lunch. USA Today’s The Oval reports:

In signing a new law today to improve the quality of school lunches, President Obama paid joking tribute to its most prominent supporter: first lady Michelle Obama.

“Not only am I very proud of the bill,” the president said, “but had I not been able to get this passed, I would be sleeping on the couch.”

Mrs. Obama, whose major issues include fighting childhood obesity, laughed and said, “let’s just say it got done, so we don’t have to go down that road.”

The Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, a $4.5 billion measure, provides more free school meals to the pool, and gives the government more power to decide what foods can offered in those meals, as well as in school vending machines and fundraisers during school hours.

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San Francisco Bans McDonald’s Happy Meal

San Francisco has enacted a law prohibiting restaurants from giving toys away with high-fat and sugary meals, including the American staple: the Happy Meal. This was done in hopes that children won’t opt for unhealthy food just because they receive a toy as well. The New York Daily News reports:

The McDonald’s Happy Meal went the way of Prop. 19 in San Francisco Tuesday when the city’s board of supervisors voted to forbid restaurants from offering toys with meals that contain too much fat and sugar.

Restaurants would also need to provide fruits and vegetables with meals that come with free toys. The city said the measure was an effort to combat childhood obesity.

“We’re part of a movement that is moving forward an agenda of food justice,” Supervisor Eric Mar told the Los Angeles Times. “From San Francisco to New York City, the epidemic of childhood obesity in this country is making our kids sick, particularly kids from low income neighborhoods, at an alarming rate.”

The rule, scheduled to take effect in December, says that restaurants may include a toy with a meal it contains fewer than 600 calories – food and drink combined — and if less than 35% of the calories come from fat, The Times reported.

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