After reading a few articles about American obesity I was rather disturbed. Earlier this year CBS news did a segment on American obesity and they stated; that 2/3 of Americans are overweight or obese, and that childhood obesity has tripled (almost 3 of every 4 children are obese). Another article posted on KTIC (www.kitcam.com), a rural agricultural radio station in Kansas stated that farmers and ranchers are being blamed for American’s obesity problem via the media.
Whatever happened to the concept of being respectable and taking responsibility for ones actions? As a farmer I am very offended by these allegations. I think its about time to stop the “blame game” if you will, and wake up a bit. 30 years ago the thought of an abundant and affordable food supply was almost unheard of, however; today the United States has one of the most abundant food supplies in the world. How do American Farmers fit this equation of obesity in the U.S.? Everything that us as farmers and ranchers produce is a healthy, and wholesome product. Since when do farmers grow junk food? Granted there are things added to foods, once further processed that aren’t considered healthy, but as farmers, our end product is “healthy”. I think much of the responsibility lies in the hands of the consumers, by choosing products that are “good” or “bad” for them.
Portion size has a lot to do with this concern. As Americans I’m not sure where our concept of portioning has gone? Many will argue that the “unhealthy” foods that are doing this to Americans are mainly those that are further processed and cheaper. This may be correct, however; there are just as many healthy options as there are bad, its just up to consumers and parents to make the right decisions. You are responsible for what products you consume, healthy or unhealthy, so its up to “YOU” to make the right decisions.
There is an old saying that comes to mind when thinking about all of this,
“Don’t bite the hand that feeds you” and many people are doing just that.