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Letters to the editor

March 4, 2011

Letter to the editor

Pella — To the editor,

We need to make sure that children are receiving healthy lifestyle habits, such as eating healthy and having physical activity in schools.

In the past 30 years, childhood obesity has more than tripled. In children age 6 to 11 years old, the frequency of obesity has increased from 6.5 percent to 19.6 percent, from 1980 to 2008. In similarity, children age 12 to 19 years old, obesity has increased from 5 percent to 18.1 percent, from 1980 to 2008. With these absurd statistics, it is shown that childhood obesity is a growing problem and needs to be resolved quickly, before more high-risk outcomes arise.    

The only solutions to this problem are to change the children’s eating habits and to provide physical activity programs for the children. The issue of childhood obesity can only be resolved by a joint effort between the government, the parents of these children, and their schools. The school authorities should be watching the menu of the food that they offer and the quality of that food. Schools should make the children go outside and play outdoor games; also they should be required to do regular exercise, like Physical Education Class, to keep them active and fit.

Parents too should make sure all of these aspects are being followed strictly. If they are not addressed when the child is at a young age, it could have high-risk consequences. It is easier to change these poor habits while the child is young rather than when they are adults. Parents need to make their children interested in going outside to play or simply being involved in some sort of physical activity sport, rather than staying in and playing video games. This not only will help them with their physical health but it will stimulate their mental health as well.

The RWJF, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, funds efforts at the local, state and federal level to change public policies and community environments in ways that promote improved nutrition and increased physical activity, both of which are critical to reversing the childhood obesity epidemic.

So, please vote for more funding and support the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


Nicole Sikkema



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