Working on trimming some of the fat

Published: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 15:49 PM.

A few nights ago I saw a blurb involving high school students complaining about their "new and improved" school lunches. When Congress added caloric limits to the stew, apparently the dish became a bit too bland and watery to their tastes and for their needs.

I think cutting down on childhood obesity is a noble cause, but it seems to me government is attacking the wrong end of the varmint. From my life’s lessons, it seems to me modern kids’ weight problem isn’t intake but rather out-go.

By today’s standards, my teenage dietary habits fell just short of suicidal. Counterintuitively, I and virtually all of my friends and fellow students were skinny.

The few overweight kids mostly battled genetics rather than sedentary behaviors. For a decade after I got out of high school, I even took supplements to gain weight!

The product was appropriately called "Weight-On" and didn’t work all that well on me until 20 years after I quit taking them. The label didn’t mention "time release" but apparently they popped open when I hit my 40s.

The reason my world didn’t bulk up wasn’t because of what we ate but rather what we did. I think that’s the basis for Michelle Obama’s "Let’s Move" initiative.

However, for all the good intentions, it seems the system is working at cross purposes. Physical activity in schools today is often sacrificed upon the altar of self-esteem. Schools are reluctant to offer activities where there are "winners" because that means there are "losers."



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