Why Are Our Children Getting FATTER?


Why our children are getting fatter. #health #fitness


It’s not always an easy thing to admit, but as a population, we are getting fatter. We are also getting taller and living longer than previous generations. Even our shoe size has got bigger too. But there’s no denying that our waistlines have considerably increased. Over-eating has become one of the top three causes of premature death in the US. But despite this, the number of those trying to lose weight is falling. What’s more worrying however, is that our children are getting fatter too. And if we aren’t careful, we could end up feeding our kids to an early death. Obesity rates in children have more than doubled. Furthermore, it’s quadrupled in teens, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Childhood obesity tripled in 40 years

There’s no doubt that our bodies have changed in shape over the last few decades. Since the 1970s, the proportion of children with obesity in America has more than trebled. Today,it’s estimated that one in five school-aged children suffers with obesity. Childhood obesity can have an enormous impact on physical, social, and emotional health. They can have a higher risk of developing chronic health conditions and diseases. These can include asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, type 2 diabetes, and risk factors for heart disease. Children who are obese often become bullied and at a higher risk of suffering with depression, low self-esteem and social isolation.

So why are our kids getting fatter?

  • Sugar. Americans now consume more than 30 times the amount of sugar they did three centuries ago. That’s equivalent to 132 pounds per person per year. And children are no exception. In fact, 16% of the total calories in childrens’ diets come from added sugar. This is considerably more than the recommended daily amount. Added sugar is simply empty calories and could put children at risk of developing obesity. 
  • Fast food. It’s not uncommon now for children to get most calories from foods like pizza and burgers, rather than healthier alternatives. And making the problem worse is that many kids no longer even eat many of their meals at home with the family. Instead, children often eat their meals on the go in the car or in front of the TV. This social isolation only contributes to the obesity problem. 
  • Less exercise. Today, Americans do not get as much exercise as they need. A survey by Y-USA showed that 74% of children between 5 and 10 don’t get enough exercise each day. Furthermore, over 90% of high school age students don’t get enough exercise to ensure they are fit and healthy. This pattern continues after graduation. In fact researchers at Standford University School of Medicine blame inactivity for causing the surge in obesity in America. 
  • Portion size. Portion sizes have dramatically increased since the 1950s. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention even refers to it as “The new (ab)normal”. It says we should not ignore the connection between serving size and our expanding waistlines. It even recommends we ask restaurants to provide us with smaller meals. 
  • Junk food advertising. Children also face regular advertising from fast-food chains. Critics of the fast-food industry believe that this constant promotion leads to children piling on the pounds and encourages unhealthy eating. 

What will our future look like?

Technology and medicine are rapidly changing and improving all the time. Therefore, it’s impossible to know exactly what’s in store for us in the future. We can only hope that by setting a good example for our children today, and them doing the same for their kids, perhaps in 50 years the population can look forward to healthier bodies and smaller waistlines. 


What do you do to help your kids have a better life?

About Lisa

Hey! Thank you so much for stopping by. I'm Lisa - a homeschool mom of 3 (2 boys and 1 girl). I care about the strength of the family in America, and often blog about babies/kids, natural parenting, homeschool, and marriage. Before you leave, please sign up for my monthly newsletter (on the top right). If you do, you will be well rewarded with notification of all giveaways and sales - which will not be announced on the blog. Google+ Profile


  1. We exercise as a family or my daughter just won’t do it. And having meals together/eating at home except for very rare occasions. As a society we really need to get a handle on this obesity epidemic.

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