The ‘Overweight’ Generation… Generation O

I have come across some interesting articles lately about the importance of screening individuals for diabetes, cholesterol, and people with heart conditions in the L.A. Times as well as the Press Telegram here in Long Beach. It is a sign of the times that we are in a crisis of inhibiting bad eating habits and lack of participating in some sort of physical activity everyday. Growing up I was labeled in the ‘Generation X’ category, a generation that was known to be individualistic, technologically adept, flexible, and last but not least value a balance between work and life.  ‘Generation Y’  was the next wave of kids to grow up throughout the 90’s and now I would personally dub this current generation of kids as ‘Generation O’ (O stands for Overweight). I’m noticing more kids with less energy and motivation more than ever before. I have to believe that lack of exercise activities and poor nutrition play a massive role in the way kids are moving around today. Combine that with the mentality that everyone wants things ‘now’ and patience is NOT a virtue is a scary thing. The fact that we all look to medication and the ‘secret pill’ to fix all of our problems is a huge mistake! Daily good exercise and nutrition are just another way of life. Just like sleeping and breathing… If you stop you will die. Simple as that! We all need to take a step back, gain some more balance in our lives between good nutrition and exercise, and look at our priorities and notice what is truly important in our lives. Patience and understanding with being healthy is a HUGE part of this and it takes time like everything does in order to become healthy and strong. A few years ago I heard someone say ‘Get in line.. And stay in line!’ Meaning that if you start a good whole-food nutrition or workout routine that you must be patient with your results. ‘Don’t get out of line’ or in other words quit your diet or workout routine just simply because you don’t have time or because your not having fun with it. Most likely you will end up spending more time in pain or in the hospital bed later in life. Individuals who work out and have a better diet are often generally happier and in better moods at a more consistent level. Daily exercise can releases endorphins which in turn create a better platform for a healthy happy lifestyle 🙂 I read the following story below this morning and found it disturbing that they would note that children should be taking lipitor or other drugs in order to lower cholesterol instead of really emphasizing the fact that parents and children need to drastically change their lifestyle into more productive healthier choices. Kids need influential ‘idols,’ whether it’s the parents or a professional sports figure to get motivated! One way to do this is to encourage children to participate in outside activities other than school and encounter more interactions in order to gain certain life experiences so that kids can grow and find their own identities. My identity is rowing and sport! I have an extreme passion for the sport and always encourage others to find out what they really want to do in life. I have had many experiences throughout my life to pick and choose what made me happy and what I could excel at… Whatever it is you want in life go for it and don’t let anyone hold you back 🙂

‘What YOU think is possible…IS possible!’ -John Nunn (Olympic Bronze Medalist 1968, Rowing)

Read on and learn learn more about where our next generation of children are heading…

Kids may be screened for cholesterol

SCIENCE: Policy change would go beyond high-risk family histories.
By Marilynn Marchione, The Associated Press
More children should be screened for high cholesterol before puberty, beyond those with a family history of problems, according to wide-ranging new guidelines expected from government- appointed experts who are trying to prevent heart disease later in life. The new advice will be presented Sunday at an American Heart Association conference by some members of a panel for the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Any call for wider screening is likely to raise concern about over diagnosing a condition that may not cause problems for decades, if ever. Yet studies suggest that many children with high cholesterol will also have it as adults, and it’s one of the causes of clogged arteries that can lead to heart attacks. Until now, major medical groups such as the American Academy of Pediatrics have advised screening only children with a family history of early heart disease or high cholesterol and those who are obese or have diabetes or high blood pressure. However, a West Virginia study tested more than 20,000 fifth-graders and found that many with high cholesterol would have been missed by the targeted screening approach used now, said Dr. Stephen Daniels, who led the panel that wrote the new guidelines. Heart disease starts early in life, and “the risk factors that are important for adults are also important for children and adolescents,” Daniels, pediatrics chief at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver, told The Associated Press. About a third of U.S. children and teens are obese or overweight. And government studies estimate that about 10 to 13 percent of children and teens have high cholesterol – defined as a score above 200. Daniels and other members said they could not disclose details of the advice before Sunday’s presentation. It’s the first time a government panel has collectively considered all major contributors to heart disease including obesity, smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure and high blood sugar. A key change will be more aggressive recommendations for cholesterol screening and treatment in children, including a change in “the age at which we feel we can safely use statins,” said Dr. Reginald Washington, a pediatric heart specialist in Denver and member of the panel. The pediatrics academy already advises that some children as young as 8 can safely use these cholesterol-lowering medicines, sold as Lipitor, Zocor and in generic form. They are known to prevent heart disease and deaths in adults and are approved for use in children. That is why one group, the Preventive Services Task Force, concluded in 2007 that there’s not enough known about the possible benefits and harms to recommend for or against cholesterol screening for children and teens. The pediatrics academy’s call for selective screening came out a year later, and even that may not be catching enough children and teens who are at risk, said one of the leaders in establishing those guidelines, Dr. Frank Greer, a pediatrics professor at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.”If you just use history of cardiovascular disease in the family, you will miss kids,” he said. And with the dramatic rise in obesity, “they’re at great risk,” he said.Getting a baseline cholesterol test on kids is a good idea, said Dr. Roger Blumenthal, preventive cardiology chief at Johns Hopkins Medical Center.”Some people will think it will lead to treatment of adolescents and people in their 20s” who don’t really need it, but drug treatment should occur only if cholesterol can’t be brought down with diet and lifestyle changes, he said. If screening is done, it should happen before puberty, when cholesterol levels dip before rising again, doctors explain. In children, the test does not need to involve fasting overnight and can be done from a standard blood sample or just a finger-prick test. Other parts of the new guidelines: The government will toss out older terms – “at risk for being overweight” and “overweight” – and replace them with “overweight” and “obese” for kids in the 85th and 95th percentiles, Washington said. Some doctors have been reluctant to use such frank terms in children, because of the stigma. Last summer, the British government gave its first exercise advice for children under 5, urging some daily activity even for babies too young to walk. And the U.S. Institute of Medicine also recently gave diet and exercise advice for preschoolers.
Here is a story from over 10 years ago on ABC News Network featuring stories about kids with onset diabetes and the description that kids are literally eating themselves to death. Crazy to think more than 10 years has gone by and as a society we are still not listening. Increasing numbers of diabetes and higher cholesterol among children are rising everyday. What kinds of future decisions will you make for yourself and your children? A good start would be to get on Juice Plus and the Juice Plus Children’s Health Study which gives children a chance to take this product for FREE if you are taking it as well 🙂 Please contact Jack Nunn at Roworx for more details about this life-changing program 🙂

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Jack Nunn

Jack Nunn is the head trainer and owner of Roworx. Jack is a former national team rower who has competed in more than 100 triathlons, including 9 full Ironmans. He has created a system of rowing that prepares the whole body for both competition and fitness longevity.

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