Ok so consider yourselves warned. I am on one! I thought it was worth sharing and really, I am not pointing my finger at anyone in particular. Just society, I guess.
Today I was lucky to get to attend a field trip with Braxton's Kindergarten class. We went to the local High School and toured their Agricultural Dept. (which is like the best in the county!!) It was really fabulous. The kids got to plant their own flowers, pet baby farm animals, and watch a student work on a welding project. They also got to see the fish being raised in big tanks. It was really interesting especially since my husband went to the said school and never even told me it had any of those features.
We get to the school and after the first demonstration they take us into a classroom and give all the kids goldfish crackers and Capri-Sun. Ok, so here we go. First of all, they aren't hungry. We just barely got there and they hadn't really even done anything. Do you know that eating sugary, processed food like that actually makes you more hungry. It does so here they are giving them junk when they aren't hungry, only to make them more hungry. Second of all, in about 5 minutes they are all going to have to use the bathroom, which we were not allotted time to do. And lastly, there was nothing even remotely decent about the "snack" they decided to give our children. Pure sugar, high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, way too much sodium....
So here is my thing. As a parent this is extremely maddening. Do you hear what I'm saying? So here is my sweet boy who I seldom ever give fishy crackers or Capri-Sun, in a classroom with his friends eating garbage. I am not going to remind him that we don't eat things like that. I am not going to tell the high schoolers, "you know this stuff is garbage, right?" So what is a lady to do? Just stand by?
People are always telling me, moderation, moderation, moderation, and I am so sick of it. I get moderation. I live it. I am not a food snob. I really AM NOT! I will argue that all day. When I go to my Grandma's I eat her grilled cheese she makes me on white bread with 7 layers of cheese and I love every bite. Seriously. Then we have dessert. But here is the thing. For how long does moderate work before it's not moderate anymore? My kids go to church where they are fed graham crackers in nursery. Ok, no problem, they have one graham cracker a week. Not going to hurt them. Then we go to a playdate/field trip and everyone is serving cupcakes, fishy crackers, graham crackers, Capri-Sun... Fine. One more day, not too bad. Braxton wants hot lunch once a week and it's pizza, chocolate milk, canned peaches...Then it's Valentine's Day and they get candy. I go VT, they come with and they get candy from the nice lady. We go visit family members, they get treats. Then it's their cousins birthday and they get cake.... it seriously never ends, and everyone thinks I am a freak. Is this the moderation that I should be o.k with?
The more I learn about nutrition the more carefully I want to watch what I eat and what I give my family to eat. You know it's like I can't just play dumb anymore. It kills me. I would never give my children drugs or alcohol so why would I give them overly processed, sugary foods and drinks. They have almost as severe adverse affects. Really!
Also, does the school not think about the children with ADHD or other learning difficulties. The other mom that I rode with over there was telling me her frustration because her son has ADHD and she has him on an extremely strict diet. That diet was completely blown today during the field trip. She was telling me how upset she was about it and I really felt for her.
So really, help me. I want to sometimes pick up my kids and drive out to the country and live there, off the fat of the land and nothing else. I feel like I have to stand alone a lot. It's hard. Not as much for me anymore but hard for my kids sometimes when everyone around them is eating junk in a free for all manner and I am limiting their intake. That's my job though, right. If everyone else was throwing their kid off a bridge would I? Nope!
People often tell me not to worry about it. I don't worry about it. I do something about it but I am starting to feel frustrated that everything I am doing is being undone by society. No one in particular. Just the way people are. The things they think are snacks. The way they show they care...
The public school system. They completely eliminated birthday treats at school because they were "unhealthy" but yet they serve chocolate milk every day at lunch. What? Does that even make sense to anyone? Do they really think that is healthy?
I am all about a Valentine treat, a birthday treat, a ..... BUT really, lunch should be lunch and a snack should be nutritious. When I send my kid to a birthday party I expect them to eat cake. But, when I send them on a field trip I don't expect them to eat a sugary snack.
Please don't think I am judging you if you give your kids goldfish crackers for snack. That is not my intention. Even if you give my kids goldfish crackers on occasion, it's ok. I don't think it's anyone's fault, I just think it's how our society is being run. By the ad companies and the foods they are promoting. By the fast, easy, convenient foods that would be o.k to eat once in a while but that once in a while is turning into multiple times a day. That is crazy to me! And then the unhealthy people everywhere and no-one putting two and two together.
I truly believe that this is why our society is unhealthy. It is because of what we put into our bodies. It is because everyone is too busy to make a homemade meal or cut up veggies for snack. If what you are eating is overly processed, then it is stripped of nutrients. It is empty calories doing your body more harm than good. Raising your blood sugar only to have it drop again and make you feel more hungry, irritable, depressed...It can poison us, literally, and that is what I don't want to happen to my children.
So do me a favor. Don't just read this and move on. Leave me a comment. If you think I am wacky, then tell me. If you see my point, please let me know because I don't want to be a huge downer/complainer. It is all just really fascinating to me. That's all.