According to a report published in 2005 in the New England Journal of Medicine, in the first time in two centuries the current generation of children in America may have shorter life expectancies than their parents. I first heard this many years ago, prior to having my own children, but it stuck with me and I often think about it.
When I sat down to think about how I wanted to help people, children was the focus that kept surfacing. Children are the future. They need help. They depend on us to teach them, provide for them and show them the right thing to do. We have failed them. Not on purpose though, we simply just don’t know better. Absolutely no fingers pointed here. It is really, really hard to do the right thing in our society, but we can’t give up trying.
Harry Truman said in 1946, “A nation is only as healthy as its children.”
Our children are not healthy and neither are their parents.
In a book I read last year, Lunch Wars, many startling statistics were shared that I wanted to share with you.
- Americans spend $200 billion per year in diet related health care costs; twice as much per person than any other developed nation.
- 50% of all cancer could be prevented through healthy diet and exercise.
- Over 95% of America’s health care dollars is spent on disease treatment; less than 5% is spent on prevention.
- The average American life expectancy ranks 46th in the world.
- Only 2% of school age children eat the USDA’s serving recommendation for all five major food groups. Half of America’s school children eat less than one serving of fruit a day.
- Nearly 30% of American children eat less than one serving a day of vegetables that are not fried.
- According to the Institute of Medicine, at least 30% of the calories in the average child’s diet derive from sweets, soft drinks, salty snacks and fast food.
- Over ⅔ of all foods consumed by school children are foods that are recommended for occional intake.
- Since 1970s obesity rates have tripled among children ages six to nineteen.
- Twelve percent of American children currently have type 2 diabetes (which is typically adult onset) and rates are increasingly annually. The CDA reports that 1 in 3 children born in 2000 will develop type 2 diabetes.
- Nineteen percent of American children are obese and 35% are overweight and the trend is increasing. The prevalence of overweight or obesity in children will nearly double by 2030.
- One quarter of children ages five to ten have elevated blood cholesterol or high blood pressure.
- One in four children take prescription medication on a daily basis for chronic illness.
- Childhood asthma rates have more than doubled in the past thirty years and autism rates have increased by 57%. Now autism affects one in 110 children, one in 60 boys.
- Between 1995 and 1999, antidepressant use increased 74% among children under eighteen, 151% amount children 7-12 and 580% amount children under 6. The use of mood stabilizer increased by 4000% amount children under 18 and use of antipsychotic medications increased 300% among the same age group.
- American girls are beginning puberty 1-2 years earlier than they were a generation ago.
Teaching children how to make healthy choices is a starting point but ultimately children still need support and guidance from their families. When I decide to rejoin the online world, I knew my heart was with children but the focus had to be on the whole family.
This is my personal “why” (not pictured little brother joining us beginning of 2019)
Parenting is hard. So hard! Sometimes just living is hard, right?! Then finding the time, money and energy to be healthy is a whole other level. The world’s messages are confusing with all the conflicting information out there. People need help and I want to be that help! Let’s make improvements together, slowly one day at a time, trying to do better and live better.
Wellness to me is taking care of our entire body, including our mind and our whole life around us. To do that, we need to focus on the health of our physical body, specifically our gut, the toxins we are exposed to whether intentionally or unintentionally, stress reduction, quality sleep, movement, and mindset. And of course the food we put into our body, which can be nourishing and helping us thrive in these areas or drag us down. Food is a big topic and a popular one, so that is where I will spend a lot of time and where I will start out. You will hopefully understand my food philosophy, learn from me about quality of food and ways to make better choices and of course get lots of real food recipes.
Some additional topics I hope to specifically focus on are tips for feeding kids, sugar, fermentation, sprouting, gardening, meditation, EMFs, holistic health care management techniques, personal growth strategies, essential oils, cleaning products, personal care products, baby led weaning, local food movement, gut health, elimination diets, movement, detox, Functional Medicine, sleep, stress management and much more.
I also want to hear what you want to learn about, what areas you need support with and where I can be of service to you. That is why I am here. This is why I do this. I truly believe I was put on this earth to help people learn to make better choices, to help change the health of our nation’s children and their families and to support them on their wellness journey.