Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fast Food and Fast Maturity

We have heard stories that indicate kids are matuing at a alarmingly quick rate. The most recent fact I have heard relates to girls having their first menses at age 8 which is in the second grade. Far be it from me to cast blame on why this is such an epidemic, but I might consider looking to the food industry as a whole. Ever since the "modern age" we have been on a quest to make our lives easier, faster, and more efficient in every aspect. This has accounted for use of antibiotics in food supplies to prevent damaging diseases in animal products. There is the addition of growth hormones to make the animals and birds grow bigger and fatter in a shorter period of time  to produce more product for a growing demand. Then we have artificial agricultural products to keep disease and blight from infesting and destroying whole crops. That is a lot of artificial substances  being pumped into the American food supply. From what I have heard from friends who have traveled over seas, we are the only country that practices this type of gambling with our food chain. The French still can generally track where the milk comes from for their cheeses.Italians still harvest and make their own grains and pastas and baked their own bread  from handmilled  grains that are hand picked and culled. The Hawaiian coffee grower still practice outdated methods of harvesting, growing and roasting Kona coffee, one of the best tasting coffee perhaps in the world.

So where did we get the idea that no matter what we choose to inject into the food supply in a nation, starting at birth ,would not have a dramatic effect on growth and development? I am sure it had to do with some less than accurate marketing claims. Perhpas the fear of a coming famine helped.But now we have truth in advertising laws and food regulations which seem to be ill equipped to deal with the onslaught of issues in our food supply brought about by all these practices.

The amount of hormones in milk and meats is astounding. Milk and dairy products are perhaps what our kids consume most of and they are highest in these substances, according to a few limited run reports.
 As any woman who is short on hormones and she can testify to what a drastic impact just one hormone imbalance will do for your skin, mood and thought processes. The thing most of us fail to recognize is hormones don't function in isolation of each other. They work together to provide the body the appropriate support and function for all the  organs we depend upon for maximum health. Stress hormones impact not only the organs but the vessels, resulting in hypertension, as an example.

The addition of hormones over an extended period of time in a child's diet will not go unnoticed bt the body. The maturing brains, sex glands and vasculature will respond. We have seen reports that a teen's brain will hit a growth spurt which will increase the amount of information they can process. But they still haven't developed the higher reasoning skills like frustration tolerance, delayed gratification and the ability to think things through to their possible outcome before acting. They may have developed these by the time they are close to 25, if then.  This is what happens in the natural child. Now dump two tons of various hormones, additives, genetically manipulated material into the already delicately balanced system and the result is questionable at best.
Sow what to do? First, stop with all the convenience foods that are loaded with chemicals and stuff you need a chemical engineering degree to even pronounce. Stick to food as close to  its natural state as possible and buy organic if the fruit or veggies is something with a thin skin or that will retain the skin when consumed. Look at eliminating such things gluten  articifial sweeteners. If you must use one on occasion, use Stevia,  or regular cane sugar. Eliminate oils, except olive, and eat nothing fried. For meat, organic grain or range feed only, free of hormones and antibiotics. No processed meats like hot dogs, lunchmeats, etc and yes  get rid of caffeine as a regular drink :stick to water ,filtered .

If you expect your child to make this transition, you need to show the way.  Be prepared to shift your focus too. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. Just make it more often than not and you will see a definite difference in your overall health and wellbeing and maybe just maybe we can avoid girls starting their period in kindergarten.
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