This site covers the social, political, economic, and health impacts of childhood obesity. A common thread that runs through our site is the exploration of food addition. Food addiction remains a controversial topic; many are in denial it is even possible. Yet being an obese child is a major contributor to debilitating diseases and even premature death.
The Case for Food Addiction
Processed Foods and Fast Food
We are surrounded by hyper-palatable, processed foods. These foods have high combinations of sugar, salt, and fat. They may also contain chemicals that encourage repeated consumption. All of these substances can be interpreted by the brain the same circuits as alcohol and drugs. This combination can be disastrous for young brains and their development. (Do major food companies care? That’s another discussion!)
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Politics and Regulation
The notion of “personal responsibility” is fair when discussing adults. But is it fair to assert that on children, or on addicts? Should we implement more legislation to protect our children? Where do we as a society draw the line? Or, do we need some other other approach, such as making our streets more walkable and bike able to encourage healthier lifestyles?
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Shame of Addiction
As a society we don’t talk about food addition in part because it hasn’t been formally recognized by the DSM-5 — although gambling addiction was recently added. As a society we still largely and collectively moralize addiction as a character flaw rather than a chemical dependency. We hope this site helps change that perception and provide empathy for children fighting with their weight. Unfortunately, fat acceptance can hurt, too.
Thanks for joining us. We look forward to your comments here.