Hey parents — here’s a newsflash…this just in:
Through the eyes of a young heart attack patient, the video shows you how he ended up on the operating table at such an early age.
And the video isn’t some science fiction or political propaganda. The video is absolutely, 100% dead on (pun intended).
We live in a culture today which hands out soda after sporting events — suckers after gymnastics — random candy at school for no good reason. It’s everywhere. It’s the norm.
And parents can be made to feel guilty or weird if they say, “thanks but no thanks” to the sweet, little old lady handing out peppermints at the mall.
Donuts, cake, cookies, soda, juice, chocolate — they’re all the norm in our society.
So you know what else has become normal? Heart attacks. Obesity. Diabetes. And many other diseases of degeneration. Is that so unbelievable?
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say, “oh you’re too strict! let them have some candy” or “it’s just one cookie, don’t be such a jerk, you’re depriving them!” Or things along those lines.
Let me stop here and say that my kids get cake at birthday parties or parties at school. I let them eat the little sucker the gymnastics place we go to hands out after they finish (they get it AFTER they eat dinner). I don’t run up like Batman and knock the candy away from them in slow motion if anyone hands them candy. I’m not THAT guy.
But I’m also not the guy that will allow that stuff to be around all the time. When that stuff is around all the time — so are other bad things in the future. If “treats” and candy are sporadic, so would be all the diseases I mentioned earlier.
Our culture has changed the definition of normal or moderate or “every once in a while.” We need to do some serious work to get those words back to their original meaning.
How can we do that?
“We” needs to become “me” to begin with. Our culture won’t change unless YOU change. Unless I change.
Keeping that stuff out of your house and out of the norm is not eliminating happiness from you or your child’s life. Where did that notion even come from?
We lasted a heck of a long time without all that garbage and were happy.
HAPPINESS DID NOT APPEAR WITH THE INVENTION OF SUGARY, PROCESSED FOODS.
Let me say that again, happiness has been around for as long as humans have. Garbage food has not. So don’t give me the “my kids aren’t going to be happy” line because I don’t buy it. It’s a lie.
Tying happiness to the ability to say “yummy” is incredibly dangerous for the future of our children — and for YOU.
Happiness should be tied to relationships and self-fulfillment and giving to others and contentedness. Not sugar. Seems a little ridiculous when you think of it like that.
In many families I’ve worked with, it’s not even the kids who are driving the demand of non-human food in the home, it’s the parents. Parents know that they can’t be eating pizza and demanding that their kids eat broccoli. So what’s the alternative? Well, everybody just gets pizza and ice cream and hamburgers every night because mom and dad want it. That’s not fair to your kids.
You also don’t need candy to reward kids and get them to do stuff like poop in the toilet or do what you say. It’s very effective, but so is the Warm and Fuzzy Jar. It’s a mason jar decorated by the child that gets filled with super cheap cotton balls anytime the child does something you ask without throwing a fit — or being polite — or putting their dishes in the sink — or whatever. Then when the jar is filled up, they get an experience: a movie, a trip to the park, a date with mom or dad. It doesn’t HAVE to be food.
That culture MUST change.
Start by eliminating non-human food from your home. Then talk to your kids about food and special treats. My girls know that when they get the sucker after gymnastics to just hang on to it until after dinner. They know that because we had a conversation with them about it and they’re smart, capable little human beings.
Teach them about smart decisions. And that human food will make them big and strong. Show them that mom and dad don’t eat those things because mom and dad want to be healthy and strong. Your kids think you’re Superman. Model healthy human behavior for them and they’ll follow suit (unless your kids are teenagers and they are in the “mom and dad are the stupidest people on earth” phase).
We don’t have a swimming pool. So our kids don’t whine and complain every night about not getting to swim in our backyard — because there’s no pool back there. See where I’m going with this?
So get it of your house. Model healthy behavior for your kids. Teach them about what it means to be healthy — and don’t deprive your children of a happy, vibrant, strong future.
Don’t let your child end up like the kid in the video. Find other ways to reward and treat and enjoy.
Don’t wait until next week or until you eat all the garbage you already have in your possession. Life’s too short. Start changing right now. And if enough individuals change…WE will change.