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If you're poor and you have boys, read this.

(377 Posts)
user1477282676 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:22:12

www.theguardian.com/society/2016/oct/11/obesity-soar-boys-girls-poorer-homes-deprived-backgrounds-overweight-2020

I am sorry if that sounds offensive. But I am so, so angry about the state of things right now in terms of inequality in the UK (and the world!) and I have started another thread along the same lines...but this one is slightly different.

According to this article in the Guardian, obesity among boys from the most financially strapped families is going to be rising whilst obesity in wealthy children will fall.

How is this even a thing? We know what schools do in their attempts to "educate". They weigh, they police lunch boxes...but that doesn't fix anything it would seem!

I am so cross that children...and it would seem boys especially, are going to be suffering.

DJBaggySmalls Wed 01-Feb-17 13:24:07

You can police lunch boxes as much as you like but until the quality of school dinners improves beyond chips you are on a hiding to nothing.
Schools feed kids chips because chips are cheap. And thats why poor parents feed them as well.

Artandco Wed 01-Feb-17 13:28:27

Why though? It's free to do daily excercise for both genders (park, climbing trees, walking, running, football), and you can cook healthy just as cheap. Surely it's education v non education rather than rich v poor? Someone who knows how to make a lentil casserole and walk everywhere can be just as poor as someone who eats chips daily

RachelRagged Wed 01-Feb-17 13:28:29

Yep , seems like survival of the fittest and the poor are geared toward failure from the off, due to chips being prevelant and cheap, as are the likes of McDonalds et al.

Interesting those who are of wealthy parentage are losing not gaining weight. Will be all the healthy food their parents can afford then no doubt.

I am not poor poor but not rich at all. One of my DS is overweight but he eats the same as my other DS who is like a beanpole . I own up to the weekly takeaway but on other nights it jacket potatoes with filling and a side salad, spag bol, tuna pasta sweetcorn and mayo, a roast on a Sunday etc .. Once a week, as I said, I do allow them something from the chip shop or pizza .
Thank you for pointing this out OP , and caring.

DJBaggySmalls Wed 01-Feb-17 13:30:20

Artandco sorry but you are mistaken. Fast food is geared to people who are in fuel poverty and cannot cook or wash up.

SavoyCabbage Wed 01-Feb-17 13:30:47

A lot of school lunches (and free fruit/veg) goes uneaten as the dc haven't had them before so won't eat them at school. At the school where I am, PP dc will bring packed lunches even though they do t have to, because the lunches are outside their comfort zone.

And the very dc that you want to eat a carrot or even a pear won't because they haven't had them before.

I don't think it can be lain at the door or schools. People have to be responsible for what they feed their own dc.

Awwlookatmybabyspider Wed 01-Feb-17 13:31:43

Well yes they're 100% right. Poor children whatever the gender are more likely to be obese. Its logical.
Have they seen the cost of healthy organic food. Also cooking from scratch takes time which in the RW isn't exactly in abundance. Perhaps if they put the price up on crisps rather that fruit abs veg. Things would be very different.

Awwlookatmybabyspider Wed 01-Feb-17 13:33:23

People are responsible for what they feed their own dcs. Fair comment.
However how do you police that when they're in school.

Artandco Wed 01-Feb-17 13:34:18

Dj - what a baked potato is too hard to make compared to chips? You just pick potatoe up and lob in microwave or oven. If someone hasn't a microwave or oven they can't cook ready meals either. A banana or carrot requires no cooking v a biscuit.

Astoria7974 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:36:29

So if it's a socioeconomic divide then why only male obesity soaring amongst the poor, why not female obesity too?

user1477282676 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:36:42

Savoy I find it hard to believe that some kids don't know what a pear is! I don't doubt you're speaking the truth but isn't that what all those Children's Centre's are meant to be doing?

That kind of thing anywa...introducing kids to different fruit etc?

Spider do you mean how do you police them once they're in secondary?

Astoria7974 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:37:21

Also poor immigrants tend to cook from scratch, so this idea that the poor live on junk food isn't true.

TheWrathFromHighAtopTheThing Wed 01-Feb-17 13:38:11

School dinner are often revolting - burger, chips and spaghetti followed by jam tart and custard is a good example from my daughter's school.

Plus, compare the price of, say, a Pot Noodle to a home cooked dinner, add on people dealing with electricity bills they can't pay, broken cookers they can't replace, or supermarkets which sell reasonably priced foods being out of town when they can't afford a car, or the bus far, and it totally adds up.

user1477282676 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:38:47

Astoria I think a family on a budget would choose a pack of biscuits in the cupboard as opposed to fruit as it's cheaper and and feels like a treat.

No idea why t's just boys though?

reallyanotherone Wed 01-Feb-17 13:44:32

So if it's a socioeconomic divide then why only male obesity soaring amongst the poor, why not female obesity too?

At a guess it's good old sexism. Girls should watch their figures, eat nicely etc. Boys on the other hand are expected to eat in great quantities, and be physical so they need the energy.

So parents, consciously or subconsiously, will be placing the expectation on to their daughters that they should eat less, and be more aware of them becoming fat and controlling diet. Boys will be expected to clear plates and have seconds, but these days they don't have physical jobs, sit in front of the tv, and get fat. Parents will worry less as looks are less important for boys.

Lower socionomic groups buy into the gender stereotypes more, so effects will be more pronounced too.

HairsprayBabe Wed 01-Feb-17 13:46:03

It is a combination of things.

If you are in poverty, you are less likely to be well educated. Less likely to have the ability and knowledge to good from cheap ingredients. Less knowledge about what food is actually nutritious.

You could possibly be in fuel poverty so can't afford to cook a meal over a greggs sausage roll.

You are unable to buy ingredients in bulk to make savings, can't get to the supermarket and stock up on deals because you can't drive.

Google the poverty premium. Being poor is expensive you have less opportunities afforded to you and a shorter life expectancy because of ths.

RachelRagged Wed 01-Feb-17 13:46:03

Baking from scratch . I have a DF who would come under the heading of Poor. Her background is from a poor one too . Anyway she bakes from scratch and in bulk and always has , as did her DM and DGM.

Works out cheaper as well. Not everybody though is able too through perhaps their own backgrounds, electricity needed, gas (if not electric cooker), and its those whom one finds usually do eat junk . I am not being snobbish either , I am from and live on a council estate for one thing. In an ideal world people would pay Rent, Gas and Electric first, but many do not as they may have a drug or drink issue, debts etc and therefore its chepaer for THEM to get takeaways . Just my observations through life.

SavoyCabbage Wed 01-Feb-17 13:46:50

I swear, last week a year two child didn't want the fruit and I said 'do you not like pears' and he said 'no' and on the bowl went then he said to the child next to him that I didn't know what an apple was. Honestly you get dc who just say they 'don't like fruit'. It's not even slightly uncommon where I am.

Astoria7974 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:47:00

I came from a really poor immigrant background and support families who are from similar backgrounds - most don't buy anything 'western' and even fruit is eaten sparely. They rarely snack at (can't afford to) but meals are big and kids are allowed to play outside a lot. Maybe exercise is the difference?

user1477282676 Wed 01-Feb-17 13:48:01

Really I'm not sure it's that simple. It did occur to me that it might be that but I was wondering if computer games have something to do with it.

The amount of boys obsessed with "gaming" seems enormous whereas girls are perhaps less likely to play...and they do more social things like dance classes etc. Even lower socio economic areas have cheap or free groups for sports and dance.

RachelRagged Wed 01-Feb-17 13:49:11

Exercise would help yes . As a PP pointed out , you do not need money to run in a park or on a heath etc .

Trouble is that some kids (across all backgrounds I would think) tend to live in their virtual world via the internet or the game consoles . Its a tragedy.

MerryMarigold Wed 01-Feb-17 13:51:23

I think some people just don't want to bother/ don't believe it/ don't care. The amount of obese kids I see being dropped off by obese parents (we live in a mixed area, some quite deprived bits). They all KNOW, we all know by now. The school is supposed to be a healthy eating school, but some of the kids only bring 2 packets of crisps for lunch and proper full size chocolate bars. Where we used to live, you were not allowed crisps or choc (also a very deprived area, but not so 'English'). I assume it is just impossible to police it properly here so parents do what they want, AND YOU DON'T MESS WITH THEM. The BNP and UKIP are big here. There's a lot of 'anti establishment'/ you will not control my food intake etc. Is there a correlation between being a UKIP voter and being obese? I wouldn't be surprised.

HeyRoly Wed 01-Feb-17 13:52:07

Jamie Oliver did a piece on holiday hunger on his Friday night Channel Four show a few weeks back. He spoke to mothers who said they really struggled to feed their children during the school holidays. Almost all of the mothers and children featured were obese.

It's a complex situation and I don't know what the solution is. But it certainly goes well beyond cooking and budgeting lessons.

HalfShellHero Wed 01-Feb-17 13:55:12

'They miss out on warm dry clothes and homes' hmm have the poor collectively forgotten how to use the washing line, radiator or tumble dryer....hmm yes on topic, i think the cheaper to buy shit in bulk culture has to change.

reallyanotherone Wed 01-Feb-17 13:56:55

he amount of boys obsessed with "gaming" seems enormous whereas girls are perhaps less likely to play...and they do more social things like dance classes etc. Even lower socio economic areas have cheap or free groups for sports and dance.

But again, sexism at play. Boys don't do dance because it's girly. girls are expected to be social and play with friends, get taken to ballet. sitting in and gaming is a boy thing, unless a boy likes football parents don't encourage less manly persuits.

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