Category Archives: thoughts
Recently I watched a documentary on British TV called Fast Food Baby. The programme highlighted three young families with a less-than-3-year-old baby who is “addicted” to fast food.
I don’t want to recount the whole programme but essentially all three families needed professional help to ween their progeny off their demon high-sugar-and-fat-content diets. The children were averaging 3000-3200 calories per day; 500-700 more calories than a grown adult man! All of this was from take-out, home-delivered, or microwaved fast food – one of the 3-year-olds had NEVER had a home-cooked meal in his entire, albeit short, life.
Apart from the fact that these “parents” obviously need help, what was interesting, from a linguistic point of view, was the language they used to describe their situations to the health experts:
“I can’t get him to eat anything good; he doesn’t want to.”
“Generally we eat healthily.”
“Since he was sick, we’re just happy if he eats anything.”
“We might spoil him a little.”
“He just wants to copy me.”
“It’s hard for him to make changes so we sneek out and buy cakes as a treat.”
All of this language shows their attempts to minimalise the problem or worse still, to blame the child!
Ancillary to this, one observed the set-up of their houses; sweets and snacks were all kept in ground-level cupboards! Come on, are you kidding me? – that’s a no-brainer right there! A TV was bolted to the wall directly above their dining table because “he won’t eat unless he can watch his favourite programmes”. Their houses were just a collection of child’s toys and play areas – WHO? one asks, is running these families; the parents or their ill-mannered, hyperglycemic, hyperactive little offspring?
When, after much and protracted cajoling from the experts these people did finally feebly attempt to make changes, their healthy alternative food choice was . . .
Give me strength!