Bag of chips at the computer, a candy bar, hamburger in town. Polish children have very easy access to junk food. In the past two decades the number of fat children has quadrupled!
These obese is now a few percent, those who are overweight more than a dozen. They eat vegetables at least in Europe – only one and a half servings per day. The fruit is just a little better. According to Polish scientists situation gets worse than in the UK.
Researchers add a quite frightening observation – compared with other countries – Portugal, the Netherlands and the UK – children in Poland have the easiest access to the so-called junk food, both in school and at home.
Interestingly, the healthier foods children often eat at home. Very good results are associated only with common family meals. When parents have control of what children eat, then those calories shall be less than if your child eats at a bag of chips. Unfortunately, often the parents themselves are reluctant to give up their unhealthy habits, thus promoting them at the family table.
Researchers suggest the Polish school canteens should ban machines with sweets, school shops should sell nuts, dark chocolate or dried fruit. Eating habits formed in childhood have meaning for the whole life. It is incomprehensible the schools do not have appropriate restrictions.
Also schools might learn kids how to live responsibly: how to eat healthily, how to prepare simple, home-cooked meals using local, natural products, how to be responsible for the environment, how to sort waste, how to safely use the internet.