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Stuffing Our Kids So They Can Die First

By 2010 almost half the children of North and South America will be overweight.
by Julia Watson
UPI Food Writer
Washington (UPI) Mar 09, 2006
There's a global epidemic going on and we're not paying it much effective attention. By 2010 almost half the children of North and South America will be overweight. So will one in five in China and 38 percent of all children in the European Union.

Nor are children in the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Mexico, Chile, Brazil and Egypt exempt. Obesity rates in those countries are comparable to those of fully industrialized nations.

So says a new report published by the International Journal of Pediatric Obesity.

"We have truly a global epidemic which appears to be affecting most countries in the world," states Dr. Philip James, chairman of the International Obesity Task Force, warning of the trend in an editorial in the journal.

Heart disease, stroke and other illnesses are a likely result in adulthood.

But another study, by Britain's Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, found that during their lifetime obese children are also at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Till now, type 2 has generally been found in middle-aged overweight people. But the numbers are increasing in children and still may not be fully recognized, because many parents miss early signs of diabetes in their seriously overweight children.

Another 60,000 children are believed to be suffering from the combination of high blood pressure, raised cholesterol and increased fats in the blood that contribute to the weight-related metabolic syndrome believed to be the precursor of type 2 diabetes.

We have now created globally the first generation of children who could die before their parents.

Sam Etherington, deputy chairman of the British Medical Association, has called for action to stop companies advertising junk food to children.

Referring to worldwide childhood obesity, Dr. James told the New York Times that even living in isolated areas no longer safeguarded children against abandoning traditional good eating habits.

"They're being bombarded like they are in the West to eat all the wrong foods. The Western world's food industries without even realizing it have precipitated an epidemic with enormous health consequences."

Like Etherington he says, "There needs to be a ban on all forms of marketing, not just television adverts."

What does it take to wake us up to this new plague? Have we learned nothing from the consequences of ignoring early warnings over HIV/AIDS?

Send your children to school with a salad they may not want to trade for a bag of chips. It goes well with a kebab of grilled chicken pieces that have been marinated 30 minutes in 2 tablespoons of soy sauce and sesame oil. Obviously leave out the peanuts if they are allergic to them.

-- Fresh Ginger Salad

-- 2 ounces of peeled, grated fresh ginger

-- 3/4 cup lime juice

-- 3/4 cup sugar

-- a splash of soy sauce (or more to taste)

-- 1 small head of thinly sliced green cabbage

-- 1 peeled and julienned carrot

-- generous amount of jarred, drained pickled ginger root

-- cup finely crushed roasted peanuts

-- Whisk the first four ingredients together in a bowl.

-- Pour it over the next three and toss thoroughly.

-- Allow the flavors to develop for 30 minutes, then serve with the peanuts scattered over.


Source: United Press International

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