Monday, July 03, 2006

Overweight Kids are Overweight

The government (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) feels that “we” should not use the word “obese” in referring to children, because of the word’s stigma. They recommend calling overweight kids “at risk of overweight”.

How can “our society” work to combat the problem of overweight kids, with its attendant risk of diabetes, other health problems and increased risk of death, if we can’t even call overweight kids overweight. This has to be one of the dumbest bits of “doublespeak” I have seen (today anyway). I have seen some fat kids. Yes, they were fat. I have seen even more (as in large numbers of) overweight kids.

There are times to be “politically correct” (Yes, that is a lovely dress), but there are times to be frank, honest, and call “a spade a spade”. If a kid is shaped like a spade (or a club for that matter) something needs to be done before they have damaged their future health and increased their risk of dying at a younger age than they ought. Overweight kids need to be told that they are overweight by their doctor and by their family and by others charged with helping them work on the problem. Don’t bludgeon them with it, but don’t sugar-coat it either (sugar-coating may be a significant part of their problem anyway).

Care enough to tell overweight kids the truth and tell them what to do about it [i.e. healthy diet and exercise] (repeatedly), show them what to do about it (repeatedly), help them do what they have to do and make sure they do it. Help them live long enough and healthy enough to appreciate the intervention.

2 comments:

mary said...

Totally agree with your take.

“At risk of overweight.” What does that say..at best it's like a constant threat hanging over their heads..at worst..it's an outright lie.

No, those responsible for their care until they reach legal age should tell them the truth..they know it anyway. Don't think they aren't hearing it from peers, etc.

And it is a huge probelm..as a society we owe the truth to overweight kids everywhere. That kind of [olitical correctedness is nothing but harmful.

Spider63 said...

Fat kids are sick and they need help. Growing up obese is like a death sentence. Obesity needs to be treated like a serious illness.