I grew up in a family that was always on the move. As my siblings and I all participated in sports and clubs, we rarely had the time to make/eat family dinners. As we got older and more involved, it became significantly harder to find the time to make a meal before leaving for our various activities, and more common that we would stop for fast food such as McDonald’s on the way to practices. Rather than preparing meals ahead of time, or buying healthy snacks to bring with us, we fed into the social norm of unhealthy fast foods being the solution to lack of time and money. Fast food has been socialized as the alternative to home cooked meals, as it saves time, effort, and money that might be spent on expensive groceries. However, alternatively, consumers are damaging their health by eating foods high in sodium and fat, all to save a few minutes that could be spent making a healthier alternative. I have since tried to break this habit and eat healthier.
Fast food consumption is one of the leading causes of Obesity in today’s society. While stopping for food rather than cooking may save you time and money in the long run, the negative effects it has on your health can take time off your life. Obesity can lead to heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, respiratory problems, diabetes, or death. This is an extremely pressing issue today as obesity rates, especially childhood obesity rates, are alarmingly high. Children are being introduced to these unhealthy habits at a young age and without education on nutrition they are likely to pass this habit down to their children. I believe that schools should focus on health and nutrition in order to provide children with the necessary education to lead a healthier lifestyle. I also believe that schools should provide healthier school lunches rather than cutting portion sizes of unhealthy foods in order to cut calories. Overall I think this knowledge and action will help to slowly reduce the childhood obesity rate in this country, and we can work towards a healthier future.