Linking Childhood Obesity to Fast Food

Powerful Essays
“I’m Lovin’ It.” This slogan has become one of the most recognized in both the United States and in the world. Our nation has slowly gravitated towards fast food, allowing for a new industry to explode and expand over the past few decades. This monumental fast food industry has become a symbol of America and our diets. Fast food is convenient, quick, and cheap, requiring hardly any effort. It is the perfect formula for our fast-paced nation and suffering economy. The problem is shown through our sky-high rate of obesity. Though fast food has some short-term benefits like saving time and a few dollars, it has severe physical, mental and financial consequences for children, showing that the negatives of consuming fast food outweigh the positives. The fast food industry began with a man named Ray Kroc who wanted to improve the McDonald’s brother’s corporation in California. Once able to own his own franchise, Kroc was able to use his influential nature to allow for the McDonald’s corporation to expand and grow to the 28,000 restaurants that exist worldwide today. (Schlosser) Though the corporation had a rough start, Kroc was able to adopt the technique of marketing to children with a cartoon mascot, bright colors, and happy meals. (Schlosser 188) “Every month about 90 percent of American children between the ages of three and nine visit a McDonalds”(Schlosser, 193). This statement proves that the fast food industry has revolutionized our children’s thinking, eating habits and economic choices. Fast food has several consequences physically. According to Ellen Gustafson of TED, “67% of adults are overweight and obese.” This is due to that fact that many Americans would choose to order fast food rather than having a healthy meal.... ... middle of paper ... ...ume. It is important, therefore, to encourage healthy eating choices to others. Parents must do more to educate their children about advertising and healthy eating. They should reward children for good behavior with something other than food and should be encouraging when a child makes a healthy eating choice. Furthermore, strides must be taken to educate the population about the dangers of fast food through the use of warning labels. If these small steps are taken, a difference can be made, and children will not have to worry about suffering from the physical, mental and financial consequences of consuming fast food. Ultimately, our futures are at stake. Will children of our society be controlled by obesity, or will they live healthy lifestyles and reap the rewards of doing so? The problem of childhood obesity can be solved, and it starts with individual choices.
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