We spend a lot of time worrying over the health and well-being of an aging Baby Boom population, as well we should. Given less attention is a current baby boom-let that’s been underway for a while. Right now there are 52 million children under 12 yrs. old in the U.S. In a very real sense, the future health of the nation will be determined by the health and well-being of this youthful demographic.
All the more reason to redouble our efforts to instill sound habits of eating and exercise with these kids. It’s an aim hard to imagine anyone disagreeing with, but that doesn’t mean, unfortunately, that it can be easily accomplished.
These same 52 million youngsters are an increasingly popular marketing demographic targeted by the prepared food/fast food/junk food industries. The kids have money of their own to spend, and they strongly influence spending choices of their parents. At the same time, the U.S. regulation of advertising aimed at children has gone in exactly the wrong direction, weakening in the face of intense Congressional lobbying by these same health-noxious industries.
The struggle for the heart and minds – and bodies – of our kids is underway. It’s a struggle we can’t afford to lose.