Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Fat Camps and Obesogens and Greening- Oh My!

Remember when you were growing up and there was just one overweight kid in your class? Yeah, that's right I'm going to talk about childhood obesity today and more. Why? Because it bothers the heck out of me. That's why. Gone is the one child with a weight problem and now we have classrooms full of them.

When I'm at the gym and I see the British governments initiative being pooh poohed (OH NO! The government is trying to think healthy! They want kids to have a longer, healthier life! Back off you meddling government! How dare you!) because it wants to create "fat camps" as Fox News called them (Don't get me started on that network.) and people are up in arms. You know what? Maybe we need those camps because so many schools no longer have the funds for gym classes anymore. Recesses are not as long and kids sit a whole lot more. The fact that there is so much television, computer games and junk food available is a contributing factor as well to be sure. We don't know how to choose and teach healthy lifestyles. We are not educated to do it and we don't have the time. Or so it seems.

But how about this new side of the obesity coin? Newsweek published an article this week titled, " Born to be Big" by Sharon Begley (please, read). At first, I was really incensed by just the title alone. However, when I began to read further into the article it started to make sense to me. The idea that the chemicals we ingest from our foods, all those plastics and the environment is changing the chemistry in our bodies and creating obesogens, which can make you fat, is not entirely unbelievable. It is fascinating to me and while not an excuse for every overweight person (over 50 it does not apply) it is just another reason that we need to get back to basics. It is yet another red flag that we need continue to seek out the healthier alternatives and rid our lifestyles of the junk we are placing in our homes and on our plates.

All those BPA-free bottles I bought, all those cleaning and household products I converted over to in the last four years are not just because I am glomming onto the greenie trend. It's because I really believe that all those chemicals, the pure crap that companies put in our food and household goods because it is the cheap alternative and not because it is good for us are inherently bad for us on so many levels. To think that using that stuff could potentially be changing the cells in a fetus while I'm carrying it is like something out of a very scary sci-fi thriller when you think about it. Soylent Green blips across my mind.

We are weakening our bodies and our children's futures by plying our lives with all this pure junk. We pour a highly toxic cleaner on our floor and let our kids play on it. We douse our dishes and ourselves in high lathering phthalate chocked products and have no idea that we are killing ourselves slowly. I truly believe that much of the allergies, cancers and other afflictions we now suffer from in droves are due in part because of the toxic levels of junk we allow into our homes without a second thought. We are ingesting it, breathing it in and slathering it on our bodies and we need to stop and think about what we are doing. Everything is connected whether we want to think about it or not.

Resources for Kicking the Chemical Habit:

Big Green Purse

Safer Cosmetics Guide

Our Stolen Future

The Green Mom Review

Women's Health Issues

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