I usually try to keep this blog pretty positive. I try to write about things that are motivational, loving, and inspirational. I try to share the parts of my life that make me happy and I like to read things that make me happy. But allow me spend just this one blog as a vent. We all need a good vent once and awhile right?
I just spent an hour in the waiting room for the nurse to give my kid her vaccinations that she has to have in order to continue at preschool. I've always had my kids on a slower schedule for vaccines so we are a little behind but trying to slowly catch up.
Vaccines are not the issue that I write about today. During my long wait in the waiting room my time was spent trying to keep my little ones to a confined area so they didn't get exposed to every. single. nasty. germ there was with the sick people hacking and wiping their snot on the chairs. Of course my 18 month old insisted on trying to play with every handle, lick every object that was tongue level and then suck on his fingers that he stuck in the water fountain. I'm sure we brought home some germ friends with us today. Hopefully they won't stay long.
As I was standing there waiting for my name to be called, I looked around me. I watched the people walk past me every few minutes. I noticed the people sitting in chairs and standing. And I noticed how terribly overweight every. single. person in that waiting room was. Now, let me say that I know perfectly well that some people have health issues that they can't help. I know that some people are overweight because of issues beyond their control. I also know that I don't know what these people face in their life. But I also know that the lady in the wheel chair who was 100 lbs overweight was eating Lays potato chips with her coke and I know that the other lady who was probably 3-350lbs came in from her lunch break with her McDonald's bag in hand as she slowly moved from one side of the room to the other. And I know that I felt disgusted.
I feel disgusted because these people in the waiting room are not alone in their eating habits and obesity. This is the norm in our country. Try it. Go sit in a mall somewhere or a populated area (other than your country clubs or ski resorts in Aspen). Go sit somewhere where the average American might be. And just watch. Look. Notice. Observe. And you will see. Overweight, overindulgent, and inactive people. This is something that needs to be changed. How much money is being spent on health care? How many health problems can be avoided just through diet and exercise?? A lot.
Yes, I know, genetics plays a role in health issues and disease. But wake up People! What can you do with this one life you live? What can you do differently with your diet so that you might not need that medication that costs so much money? What EXERCISE are you adding to your life to keep your heart, bones, and muscles healthy? What is happening to our country?
For a long time I always said how sad it was that it costs so much more money to eat the best foods and that people with low incomes probably have a harder time affording good food. But I'm done with that bullshit excuse. It is time Americans. Time to educate our own. Time to start teaching our population how to eat. Ramen noodles is not a healthy food source! Mac n'Cheese (tasty, yes. And yes, my kids eat it) is not substantial food to serve your kid for every. single. meal with a side of Wonder Bread and American cheese. Yes, it costs a lot to eat all organic fruits and veggies but you can eat decently at a pretty good budget. But so many Americans don't know how to eat!! We don't know how to eat something that doesn't come in a box with 3 simple directions and 3 different ways to prepare: microwave, oven, or stove top.
When I went to Thailand for the first couple times I was amazed at how normally sized everyone was. And happy. And Active. No cheese. No Milk. Very little, if any, red meat. So different. My first visit in 2002 I was a little confused. I had always been taught in school that you had to have your food groups....you know? Where was your cheese and Beef? What?! No milk? Damn, your entire country must have the weakest bones in the world and all the woman must have osteoporosis, right? Wrong. Now a little disclaimer here: I don't claim to know much about the health care or diseases in Thailand and I'm not saying that it is better or worse. I'm not saying anything except that there are entire countries, worlds, communities out there that are very healthy and happy and fit that don't eat like the average American Food Pyramid tells them to eat and they are better for it. I think.
Beth from SUAR just sent me a DVD called Eating to watch. I have not had a chance do this yet but hope to soon. A quote on the back of it: "A compelling and often shocking look at the standard American diet. Asserts that following federal nutrition guidelines can kill you." American Library Association.
I'm not quite sure any if this has even made sense but I sure feel better. It just really bothers me to see so many obese, inactive, unmotivated people out there that are chowing down on their french fries, Big Macs and slurping down their Dr. Pepper.
So, I think this is officially the longest and most boring blog post I've ever written. Not to mention, the most negative and grammatically incorrect one I'm sure. The positive Amanda will be back in a couple hours to do a few tags from blog friends. Thanks for letting me vent.