Childhood Obesity Essay - Essay Prowess

Childhood Obesity Essay

Childhood obesity is a parental responsibility, but food regulation is needed


According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, whose professional purpose is to ensure children's well being, contemporary trends with regard to child obesity are indeed appalling as they are on the rise (Shifrin). Obesity is a chronic non infectious disease which is attributed to poor nutrition as the major cause. Unfortunately, traditional family models, single parent families, divorced families, as well as step-families and education institutions. Policy makers, physicians, communities, the food manufacturing industry, and more so, the media all seem to have the same behavioral drive (Gunlock). That is influencing the contemporary world's single most significant continuing chronic health threat affecting children.

When approached with the question is childhood obesity is a parental responsibility but food regulation is needed? My answer would be a resounding yes, childhood obesity is indeed a parental responsibility and governments as well as junk food manufacturers should institute policies and regulations to address the question of the country's future. The obesity pandemic is real and may lead to adverse future outcomes on the world as we know it. Obesity exposes tender aged children to very high risk of related diseases, such as, bone problems, cardiac diseases, and diabetes.

Parental responsibility

In my view, it is the parent's absolute responsibility to ensure that good nutrition and dietary habits are adhered to as well as ensuring that regular physical exercises are incorporated into their lifestyles at a tender age (Gunlock). However, it is important to comprehend that parenting is indeed affected by societal forces. Such forces may adversely affect parenting leading to unhealthy lifestyles. Should this be the case, it may be vital for governments to institute measure which propel parents to take more care in ensuring they do not disregard their parenting responsibilities (Shifrin).

There was an interesting event in Dundee, Scotland which some pundits considered to be a libertarian’s worst nightmare. The Scottish government's social workers forced one family from their family home moving them into a public housing scheme, ensured the obese children exercised regularly and even supervised the preparation of the family's every meal (Gertler). In the event that this hostile and intrusive regime does not bring about the desired outcomes, the children are placed with a foster home until such time they attain adulthood with no parental contact whatsoever. And if your children fail to slim down, you lose them. The event in Dundee, Scotland saw four children from a family of seven children placed under mandatory foster home care until they were of such weight as government regulation deems as safe (Gertler).

This particular Council’s decision had no previous precedent and as such it is only through a warning contained in the United Kingdom's Local Government Association's 2008 report that childhood obesity possibly signifies parental neglect (Gertler). As such, if a physician happens to decide that a child's body weight is hazardously high though this is subject to physician discretion and patient body mass index, such a child may be housed by the state until she or he is of sound weight. This has not actually occurred often but every such government backed move as in the stated case resulted in a heated national debate.

The City Council at Dundee made claims that it did so for the best possible interests for these children (Gertler). The UK media became abuzz with the Council’s decision and as such termed it as a hollowing example of misuse of state powers. However, Gertler, points out that at least one in every four British Children and the State should indeed term obesity as a global epidemic. There have been some pundits in the UK pointing the blame to the same government which opted to shelve the informative school’s curriculum, Home Economics. As such, it is argued that through Home Economics classes, knowledge on how to shop for health and nutritious food was imparted to children who in future would become parents. As such, such a curriculum is not only beneficial to the child then but also quit vital in her parental role (Gertler).

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