Saturday, October 15, 2011

If Happy Meals Don't Make Your Kids Happy, Don't Buy Them

I am sputtering at a mother interviewed on "All Things Considered" who is ticked because McDonald's has added apple slices to their Happy Meals and cut down on the french fries. Because her kids want more french fries and are "picky eaters" who won't eat the apple slices.

It makes me wonder what fruits and veggies these boys eat. Don't get me wrong--my girls have done their share of picky eating. But some kinds of fruits and vegetables have always been on the table.

And it makes me shake my head that this woman doesn't get it. Is she razor thin? Are her boys? Is everyone around her in her town?

It strikes me more and more each year how many morbidly obese adults--and kids--I see at fast food and buffet restaurants. I mean heavy enough to spill over the edges of their chairs. Little kids who are NOT going to grow out of that baby fat. Teens whose tight clothes are not just tight because it's the fashion. Adults who are clearly candidates for diabetes, high blood pressure and all the rest of it.

I have nothing but sympathy for these folks. We live in a high tech, low exercise, high calorie world where junk food is almost always within easy grasp and learning to cook good healthy food is relegated largely to the Michael Pollan/Alice Waters/Mark Bittman edge of society.

But it's pathetic to hear a mother moaning because a restaurant insists on putting some healthy food into what they sell for kids.

Don't want the apple slices? Want more fries? Fine.
Buy them stuff from the Dollar Menu. Buy them the sugary drinks you'd probably prefer they drink rather than milk or juice.

Explain that the plastic toys are for the poor, sad, kids who eat the apple slices.  
It's your choice. And theirs...............

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