Dear Grown-ups …. (a letter from a child)
I know that I am only a child, but I have things I want to say. My whole future still lies ahead of me. These are my foundation years where I will learn so much from you. The example you set today, will be the way I live my life tomorrow. I want a tomorrow, but more importantly I want a healthy tomorrow. Please teach me and show me how to get that right.
I know you love giving me special treats, and don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE getting them, but maybe it would be better to save them just for the weekend? I really don’t need chocolate or ice cream or fizzy drinks every day. I promise you, my world won’t collapse if I don’t eat treats all the time. Perhaps I shouldn’t have fizzy drinks at all. Don’t they make holes in your teeth?
I know that all parents love their children and only want what is best for them. But I get confused when grownups always give children food that isn’t good for them. Why do they do that? I wouldn’t feed my hamster food that would make it sick. I have friends who always have coughs, snotty noses or sore throats. They miss A LOT of school. Grownups, do you not know that being and staying healthy has a lot to do with the food that you give us? Our lunch boxes shouldn’t contain a big pile of sugar, chemicals and preservatives. We would really appreciate the extra effort it might take to prepare us something nutritious. I know juice, biscuits, chips, fruit bars and sandwiches with chocolate spread are quick and easy to make, but these things aren’t good for our little bodies. It also makes it very difficult to sit still, concentrate and listen to our teachers. I don’t like getting into trouble at school.
I have a friend who is a little chubby. I always feel so sorry for him because he sits by himself at break time and doesn’t run around and play with the rest of us. I think he is worried that the other kids will make fun of him. I wonder what his tomorrow will look like? He told me once that his mom doesn’t like cooking so they eat take outs almost every night. Moms and dads, is our health not important enough for you to cook us meals even if you don’t enjoy it? I don’t like doing my homework, but I have to do it anyway.
When we are sick, please don’t give us ice-cream or sweets, or any sugar for that matter. We need our immune system to be as strong as possible to get well again and sugar makes our immune system weak. Hold my hand, rub my back, read me a story, make me some chicken soup. These are the things I need from you when I am not feeling well.
I know that us kids can be very stubborn when it comes to eating our veggies, but please don’t give up too quickly. Our brains light up like Christmas trees when we eat junk, so really, it technically isn’t our fault that we prefer sugars and starches to green leafy veggies. But if you persevere and keep offering us healthy options, eventually our taste buds will get used to it. Fussy kids turn into fussy adults. I don’t want to be a fussy adult who hasn’t been taught to eat their veggies. Vegetables are too important.
I listen to my parents talking at night and I hear the words heart attack, cancer, diabetes and stroke. My mom and dad know so many grown-ups who are sick. It makes them sad. I don’t yet understand what these “bad words” really mean, but I do know that sometimes these illnesses send people to heaven, even when they are still too young to go. I get scared because I don’t want these things to happen to me when I grow up.
The world has become such a toxic place. We are going to therefore need all the help we can get from a very young age if we are going to live a long and healthy life. Don’t naively believe that my future health is guaranteed. It is not. Grown-ups we need YOUR help. We can’t do it by ourselves – we are too young. We place our trust in you. Educate us, set a good example. Take the time to teach us about making good choices. Don’t tell us smoking is bad , when we see you light up when you think we aren’t watching. Don’t tell us not to drink alcohol when we hear you slurring your words at the weekend. Don’t tell us to go play outside when you sit with a packet of Doritos in front of the TV. It is true what they say, kids do what you do and not what you say. Instead of rewarding us with sweets, take the time to play with us. Spend less time on your phone and more time talking to me. Time with mom and dad trumps a lollipop any day.
I am old enough to know that you can’t go to the shops and buy a new body when your one is broken. We all need to look after the one God gave us. Why waste precious time and only learn these important things when we are grown-ups? It might be too late by then.
So Grown-ups, we are not asking for perfection from you. All we want is for you to try your best. An 80/20 rule would be cool. Don’t claim ignorance, it is a poor excuse. Learn what you can so that you can do what is best for me and my health. I might not like it at first, but I know that I will appreciate it one day. You are the parent. I am the child. You always know best –right?
Posted on February 10, 2017, in Primal 101 and tagged children's health, feeding kids the right way, letter from a child, letter to grown-ups, raising healthy children, sugar, treats. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.