Monday, December 20, 2010

Childhood Obesity

Last week Obama signed the Child Nutrition Bill. No news flash here, but Americans are some of the fattest people in the world. Coming from the US to Vietnam was a slight shock seeing how skinny and seemingly fit everyone was. However, that was three years ago. Recently, I've noticed something around Vietnam -- there's a lot of chubby people here now.

A couple of years ago I had no heavy kids in my classes; now it's irregular not to have a few. I've been noticing this change recently and brought it up to a few friends who have been here for a while. Apparently I'm not the only one noticing the waist lines increasing out here especially on children. Huyen and I live by a high school and every day I see some kids who would definitely be considered obese. I'm not a nutritionist but I don't think it takes one to know that it can't be a coincidence that KFC and other fast food places have been popping up all over the place over the last couple of years. Furthermore, I constantly see kids snacking on packaged foods like chips and candy which clearly are contributing to the problem.

Clearly I don't have a say in Vietnamese governmental policy but if I was was the Vietnamese government, I'd start putting together a child nutrition bill of their own ASAP.