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Have you ever stopped to think about what junk food is really doing to your kids? Unfortunately, the high-fat, low-nutrient and low-fiber diet common in so many homes is creating a serious problem for today's children.
An estimated 72 million American adults are clinically obese, and no state currently meets the national goal, which is an obesity rate less than 15 percent. These statistics are just the tip of the iceberg.
What is really concerning is the number of children who are obese. In the past 30 years, the percentage of children between the ages of 6 and 11 who are obese has increased from 7 percent in the 1980s to 18 percent today. For adolescents between the ages of 12 and 19, the rate went from 5 percent to 21 percent. More than one third of young people in America were overweight or obese in 2012.
Pediatric obesity is a very serious problem, and it is one that is costing the country dearly.
In the United States, obesity costs $118 billion per year. An obese individual can expect to have over $1,429 in medical costs every year. These statistics alone are staggering.
When you take a closer look at the cost of junk food, it's even more sobering. Not only do you have more doctor visits, and therefore more medical costs, but you also have a higher risk for diabetes, heart disease, dementia and osteoporosis. Overweight individuals are also more likely to miss work due to health-related problems. Children who are overweight are more likely to grow into adults who are overweight, which is why this problem is so serious.
Some parents who don't feed their children a healthy diet claim that it costs more to do so, and they can't afford the additional costs. A closer look at these costs shows that the healthiest diet available costs only $1.50 per day more, compared to the least healthy diet. For just $45 more per month, you can avoid all of the unwanted problems that come from an unhealthy diet, and save untold amounts of money per year in medical costs, missed work and other problems in adulthood. Isn't that something worth offering to your children?
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