Tracey Platero, Carole Perssaud and I decided that with the smaller group of about 12 attendees we would change the format of this hour long session and make it an interactive circle discussion. I introduced Megan’s story again and warned the parents that the reason this session is critical is that our children are on target to be the first generation that will have a shorter life span than we do. Looking at this from a personal perspective I can’t bear the thought that Megan would die before I do. She got chronically ill at 11 years old and if she has an illness that you should not see until you are 50 does it mean she will live to 30, 40, 50 or die before she experiences being a mother, grandmother, wife or gets to be at peace with her body.
This started the conversation going and Tracey shared how she had been pre-diabetic, with high blood pressure and that a month ago she started eating clean. In that month Tracey lost 25 sugars! We call it sugars because its not about your weight as much as it is what you are putting into your body. Tracey removed all processed foods from her diet and reduced sugars. Her focussed efforts made her blood pressure go back to normal and she is no longer at risk of being a diabetic. Her energy level is going through the roof and her children are excited to eat healthy too! She suggested that parents help kids deal with peer pressure at school by buying a small package of their favourite chips. Put the contents into a ziploc bag and on a daily basis reuse the bag. She puts baby carrots, and cherry tomatoes in the bottom and on the top a couple potato chips. Kids don’t care whats in the bag they just think that your child is like every other child. The best answer to this is of course having your child being confident enough to be a leader in the classroom, being able to bring out the baby carrots and cherry tomatoes publicly and not having to defend their choices.
Parents, please encourage your school to bring Growing Chefs into your school. Find a teacher that will advocate this you do need someone internal to the school to support this cause. Contact Andrew Fleet and make this happen! If you are not in my area then search for non profits or companies that will teach kids about fresh fruits and veggies in your area. Help get the message into the school board!
Carole works in the school board at the highschool level and its so clear to her that most kids are exhausted and struggling to stay awake in classes due to their diets. How can you truly expect your child to be successful on Coke, Chips, hot dogs, hamburgers and fries. Thats what they eat in the cafeteria. The salads that might be available would look completely unappealing beside the junk. The junk needs to go! We also discussed the canada food guide and how it is upside down. That the level of grains that they are suggesting is not helping the obesity epidemic and also our bodies can struggle with the gluten, and get lots of stomach aches related to it. Your child’s plates should be primarily a rainbow of veggies raw or steamed. a quarter or half protein or a quarter protein and a quarter grain depending on your food beliefs.
Milk was also a big topic of conversation throughout the day. There are many people who believe its critical to their diets and to getting their calcium allotment each day, that their children would not grow without Milk. There are other people that are adamantly against dairy products. They believe they cause stomach aches and problems in their children’s bodies. The reality is that some people can digest milk without any problems and other people cannot. You need to listen to your body! Your body will tell you exactly what it likes and what is hurting it!
One of the parents shared that they had grown up in the united states and that they were always sick when they ate chicken and that you could actually taste the hormones and chemicals that the chickens were processed with. That even something like Oreo’s in Canada have real sugar and the same cookies in tje States has high fructose corn syrup. She could not drink milk in the states and when she came to Canada she was able to digest milk again. In Canada we can lose sight of how lucky we are that our animals are not dealt with the same way they are in the states. We lose sight that our kids are a bit healthier than the kids in the states due to these differences.
One thing that I didn’t realize was that in Canada we are also using GMO seeds now. For Corn, Soy, Sugar Beet and Canola. Canadians also take note that they are looking at planting Non browning GMO apples and that we all need to speak up before they do this! I don’t want chemically modified apples do you?? go to www.cban.ca to add your voice to this battle.
Overall this session was extremely interactive and I know everyone walked away with at least one thing they didn’t know prior to sitting down. I thank all the participants and the speakers for sharing thoughts and ideas.
This is a session I would like to be an ongoing event that happens while kids are playing with food in the same room and I will begin looking into that in June!
We need to change the focus on weight on as there are tons of skinny people with the same issues in their organs. Their bodies just happen to metabolize more quickly so they don’t look sick.
When my daughter first got sick i really do not know. Was it when she was 5 and complaining about stomach aches and not wanting to go to school? When she was too tired to get up from couch was she lazy or was it a hint her liver wasn’t working well.