Obesity is taking North Carolina by storm

Obesity has taken North Carolina by storm. Over one-third of North Carolina youth ages 10-17 are overweight or obese. This ranks North Carolina as 11th highest in the nation for obese youth. When doing an advocacy project with Youth Empowered Solutions, I called a N.C. representative to educate them on the importance of policies that put healthy foods in schools. While I was explaining the benefits of having stricter guidelines on the foods sold in schools, the administrative assistant stated her opinion that parents should regulate the foods that their children eat and that the state should not have to change the guidelines just because parents don’t feed their children healthy foods.

I agree that parents should feed their children nourishing healthy foods, but since students spend most of their day at school, the food students eat there should be healthy. A recent study has shown that students consume 47 percent of their total calories from meals and snacks at school. As a high school student, I know that the foods served are not as healthy as they should be.

Since almost half of our daily calories are consumed at school, the government should make stricter regulations to help decrease obesity rates. Having better nutrition is linked with better performance in schools. I believe that schools should provide the proper nutrition needed for appropriate development. As a student, I deserve to have the choice of eating healthy foods. For all these reasons I want legislators to support polices that put stronger regulations on healthy foods on schools, if you agree you should contact your representatives to gain their support.

— Carmen Procida
Asheville

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