KIDS NOT ALRIGHT
There is an old saying in food that in order to know how to eat one must first learn how to wait. When you think about that expression it has all sorts of connotations. We wait for nature to provide us with ingredients and the seasons to come around, we wait to grow up before we can eat and drink what we like, we learn how to cook things properly which takes patience and then we wait between meals for our next feed. So waiting is the key factor. The waiter then waits after you too.
With this time of year and everyone now worrying about their recent overindulgence I think of how the French like to wait for food. They are rigid about eating times making sure the tummy gets the rest periods it needs. Parents make their kids wait for meal times too, starting them as babies actually and not deviating from the adult routine which the kids simply adapt to in their formative years and then it lasts a lifetime. Waiting for the next meal time to be at the next meal time is par for the course. They have learned to cope with the wait with positive distraction and being able to think for themselves about the rationality behind the meal time schedule.
This explains why kids there are not screaming for snacks all day and sit placidly in restaurants eating mini versions of what the adults are consuming. They have built up their appetite and know they have been rewarded for their inbred patience. It a cultural thing and other countries could do well to emulate it but everyone is afraid of hunger.
Hunger is a natural state; we are genetically programmed to deal with it. Modern life has banned it except when there is no choice in unfortunate circumstances and deprived countries. It seems the opposite here and other places, babies have to be fed nonstop, kids get to dictate their menus and then they can snack whenever they like which has been a crucial factor in our obesity epidemic.
We have one hell of a crisis and it will not be reversing any time soon as generations of people are too far conditioned now. The public are ill informed about diets and hypnotized by false food marketing hence they are doomed for a future life of medical misery from their bad eating habits.
As for the behaviour of kids in restaurants well it can ruin the day for other customers having unruly children run riot while you are trying to eat a meal in peace. It’s embarrassing for the stressed out parents too having to apologize for their offspring causing such distress to fellow diners. All this simply because the kids have not had a structured and controlled relationship with food indoctrinated into them from the outset before being let to eat out in a public place. It is not their fault, they know no different.
Learning to eat properly early on in is so important to our overall wellbeing as we grow up. Okay we receive a lot of our body type and shape from the genes of our parents but it s the nurturing and lifestyle too that dictates the rest. We learn by example and if we do not show the kids the right thing to do then we are doing them a disservice.
They will only copy what they see at home and if people were more interested in when and what they cooked and ate and then passed this philosophy onto their children then we may just see a tiny turning of the obesity tide.The pressure on time and resources these days for families is preventing this and advances in technology have meant an even more sedentary lifestyle for work and play.
It seems the perfect storm has been brewed up and it is sad that future generations of kids will not know how to interact with food and diet. Fast food has been a scourge with high sugar and salt levels, things as simple as just sitting around the table as a family and eating together has disappeared bar on celebratory occasions and clever marketing has given the kids the authority to be in charge of the family.