Snack Attack

I just read an article in the New York Times about how American kids are snacked to death. Or the parents are. I mean, how many requests for snacks do you get every week. Bring snacks for soccer practice, snacks for Cub Scouts, snacks for the class reading 6 books each, snacks for birthdays, snacks for Valentine’s Day, snacks for rehearsals. I started thinking about it, and it’s true. We have created snack monsters! I’m reading this on top of hearing that 40% of the food in the United States is THROWN OUT! OMG.

So, what do you think? Can your kids go 60 minutes at a scout meeting without having a snack? I know my kids became conditioned to the fact that there would or should be cookies, cupcakes or something at everything they attended. In fact, that’s the first thing they would ask me, “Will there be food? Are they going to have cookies?” It was as if they couldn’t face a gathering unless they were stuffing their faces!

And I just went along. I can’t count how many times I’ve provided soccer practice snacks. And, you know it’s easier to take prepackaged junk than to cut up all those oranges. And the kids like the junk better, so what do you do? Be the parent who brings the healthy bad snacks, or the one that the kids like? ooo, the guilt. And, the food companies know how to take advantage of that, too. Have you noticed the upsurge in all those little “100 calorie” snack bags that are oh, so convenient, and oh, so bad for us?

And the article said that Americans eating three or more snacks a day has increased from 11% to 42% between 1977 and 2002. It’s no wonder we have an obesity problem. AND, because of our love of fast food, American children get 40 percent of their calories from food of “poor nutritional quality.”

Why is it that we worry so much about making good choices for our children’s health, but we guilt each other into bringing snack after snack to every single event?

What do you think? Are your kids being snacked to death? Are you feeling brow-beaten into bringing snacks to everything? It’s a habit and I’ll admit it would be a hard habit to break, but shouldn’t it start somewhere?

Categories: Editor’s Blog