Well, would you? I mean, no parent, even the crappy ones who take drugs themselves would willingly give their child something like that. But in a recent study, it was found that certain processed (read: junk) foods can cause the brain to respond and have addictive cravings the same as someone who uses cocaine. (This article was featured in Thursday's Daily Press newspaper, "Under Fire." Article could not be found online.)
Certain "over" processed foods, such as flamin' hot cheetos have recently come under fire for such reasons. Researchers state that these foods are super processed with these flavors causing people to crave the heck out of them. Foods are genetically engineered to so that the brain's pleasure centers are flooded with dopamine, which causes that "feel good" state thus perpetuating the need to repeat that feeling. And there you have it. Your kid is addicted to crack! (In the form of food)
I try so hard not to criticize other parents for their choices. We live in an overly critical society and I try very hard to never want to not be a part of that, I mean, to each his own! Live and let live folks! That's Betty's stance! But giving your kids crap like soda, and junk ALL the time to me is absolutely unacceptable. You wouldn't willingly give your kids poison would you? The why would you pollute them with unnecessary junk food? It's relatively the same concept! There is no nutritional value in giving your kid a soda, there is no benefit to them in giving them fast food ALL the time. In fact, the opposite is true, this is detrimental to their health and well being over time. And people wonder why their kids are overweight, or why their kids teeth are rotting out. Really? Let's think! Childhood obesity is not the child's problem, it's the parents!
I know it's hard. Shoot, despite my best efforts, my kid's favorite food is french fries!! I was a product of this type of behavior, and I grew up an overweight child. And I also admit that I allow my son to have some junk, occasionally, because we can't avoid it 100%, not a single one of us can. Some days it's way easier to hit the McDonald's drive through on the way home, or to just let them have something like a soda for a special dinner out. The key is occasionally. Giving in to your child's whims, tantrums and begging is lazy parenting. (Ugh and I hate to go that route, but I am VERY passionate about this!!)
Just think of the struggles you are having yourselves to be healthy, do you really want that for your child? I know that this is the number one reason I am the food Nazi with my children. They will never be allowed to raid the pantry, they do not get juice every day (maybe once or twice a week, and only one a day), they will never have a soda under my roof, they will eat at least one serving of fruit or vegetables daily, they will be extremely limited in having fast food. They will have the options to make wise food choices, they will learn why these things are not healthy for them, they will be allowed occasional treats because kids have gotta be kids, but they will be given every advantage to be as healthy as possible. Because I don't want them to be teased in school about their weight, or to have a phobia of eating in public, or to struggle their whole lives with obesity like me. And why would anyone else want that for their kids? This is such a passive epidemic, I mean how often do you think about that as you hand your child some chips or candy? You don't. You really have to be mindful of these things and that requires extra effort to an already overwhelmed parent! But isn't it worth it? Like I said before, you wouldn't willing poison your child. Maybe take small steps and just be the bad guy and say no. One day, your son will be in fresh and easy begging you to buy him some cauliflower! (that one blew me away!) And think of how great that will make you feel! Hooray for small victories!
* I implore you to do some digging about some of these things, google, bing, do whatever to learn some of the facts surrounding these things! Becoming informed is like arming yourself for battle!*