All over the globe, people eat what their geography gives them, with rare exceptions like the five percent of the world's population who live in the United States. Here in the United States of America, we can eat food from anywhere, and that's what we do. We have fruit, vegetables and meat shipped to the USA from all over the world. As a nation, our food supply is staggering compared to the bulk of the world's population.
All over the globe, there are healthy people, no matter what they eat. From Inuit subsisting mainly on animal products in the Arctic to the Maasai in Africa living mainly on animal products, there are cultures which have diets that are very limited. Yet, those cultures grow strong, lean members who find a way to meet nature's demands.
The human body is made to work for its food. Like most animals, we need to move around. When we move around, we remain healthier. When we fail to move around, we lose health benefits. Moving helps our joints, our muscles, our connective tissues. Moving helps our arteries, our blood vessels, our heart, and our lungs.
One key to good health may be eating better, but if good eating is not combined with exercise, good food alone with not make a person healthy. If you ingest five hundred calories a day more than your body requires, you will gain about a pound a week. That is true even if the food is all vegetables, all grown organically, and all cooked with the greatest of love and care. Food is an energy source, and its calories are the fuel that help makes our body go. If we take in more than is required to run our body, the excess goes to fat.
The key to having healthy children is principally making sure they get plenty of physical activity. Such activities should be a part of their lives from an early age. Children need to move around. They need to be physically engaged with their world. It is all we can do to keep up with their energy and tireless attack on whatever new activity has caught their interest.
Tossing a ball with youngsters is healthy for them. Nerf balls are good because they lack mass and therefore cannot hurt the child. Gymnastic or trampoline classes are excellent for getting exercise for kids. Swimming is a great activity. Getting kids into group sports is a good choice.
Getting kids outside and getting them some exercise is an important goal for young parents and grandparents. There will be plenty of television and DVD watching. There will be plenty of video games. If you want your child or grandchild to be healthy, watch their food, but whatever you feed them, get them active. Their life and their future health depend on it. Watching what they eat makes sense, but exercise and the habit of getting it will set the child on a healthy path for decades to come.
© 2013, Jim “Pappy” Moore, All Rights Reserved.