I sat on the beach and read a newspaper, and in the Letters section one lady wrote that she was shocked to see the number of obese families in Britain after returning from living abroad.  She went on to say that she had to leave a cinema mid-film because of the unpleasant aromas of food and the amount of people eating, rustling food wrappers, crunching, chewing, and slurping.

I have to agree.  Obese children more often than not have  obese parents, whose idea of a treat for good behaviour is a trip to a branch of that infamous hamburger establishment that put the nation on the road to weightiness back in the 1970s.

My own granddaughter Hayley is obese.  Kelly, her obese mother, is a size 24 and looks with suspicion on any green foodstuffs, or anything that isn’t sweet-tasting.  Their fridge is full of chocolate bars, as apparently they taste so much better when they’re cold.  Hayley is 11 years old, but already has a painful back and has had to give up her combined bed and desk to her younger cousin because she has trouble climbing up the ladder to the high bed at night-time.  Kelly has made an appointment for Hayley to see the GP because of her back problem.

And do you know what?  I know the GP will not say a word when he sees how obese Hayley is.  Doctors are so frightened of offending the patient and being sued that they will gloss over the fact that Hayley is now wearing clothes for 16 year olds.  I once stuck my neck out and mentioned Hayley’s weight to my son, who agrees with me.  However, it’s like the elephant in the room – nobody tends to talk about it and nothing ever seems to get done about it.

Hayley is permanently hungry.  When she was at the van last week she was asking when it was going to be lunchtime at 10am.  She knows we do not eat between meals except for fruit, but she complained that oranges and apples tasted sour.  We stuck it out and put up with the sulks.  We took her for walks, but she complained her legs ached.  Unfortunately we know we cannot make much of a difference to her weight because most of the time she is not with us.

It’s so sad.  Hayley should be playing out in the street and running about.  Instead she sits in front of the TV eating huge bowls of crisps and popcorn.  There are so many other young people whose lives are being shortened by this type of child cruelty.  It’s all down to parental ignorance, and we as a nation are worse off for it.

My solutions?  Fast food outlets should either be made to close for the health of the nation, or if that smacks too much of the nanny state then be forced to open their doors for only a short time only each day.  They could also be hit with heavier than average business rates.  Supermarkets need to stop selling aisles of crisps and sweets. All junk food advertising should be banned, and first-time parents should be made to attend courses on healthy eating and nutrition.  I know many people will complain about this, but we were all so much healthier and thinner before junk food increased the nation’s blood pressure and waistlines.  We now have a third generation of children being raised on this crap.

As I sat there on the beach, I heard a child complain when his mother said it was time to go home because she had to make some jam.  What kind of parent forgoes building family memories by the seaside to go home and make jam?  Goodness me, if you really have to eat the stuff, you can buy a jar of it for a pound or two!  Why not make a healthy casserole or salad instead?  I know why, because the kid already has a sugar addiction and won’t eat it.

Oh dear.  What’s to become of all these poor children?  My heart aches for them.

Shared on Esme’s Senior Salon 13/8/18 https://esmesalon.com/senior-salon-roundup-august-13-17-2018/