There are 11 people on staff at Carolina Parent — all women. We are strong, intelligent, resourceful individuals. We are committed to our families, to our friends and to our careers. We are confident women who enjoy life and everything it has to offer. Except carbohydrates.
For the past five years, on any given day, some combination of my colleagues has been on a low-carb diet. We’ve eaten sandwiches with no bread, pizza with no crust and Chinese food with no rice. We’ve eaten salads topped with cheese and meat. We’ve eaten meat topped with cheese and cheese topped with meat. And we’ve averted our eyes when desserts were offered — even when they were bowls of fresh fruit.
When I read Kathleen Reilly’s article, “Are Low-Carb Kids at Risk?” which you’ll find on page 25 of this issue, I wondered about the messages we’re sending to the children in our lives. Do we really want our sons and daughters and nieces and nephews to think that apples and bananas are unhealthy? Do we want them to believe that weight management is all about sacrifice and not about moderation, good nutrition and exercise?
In the article, Reilly examines the effects of parental attitudes and behaviors on children’s eating choices and concludes that, even in these days of low-carb obsession, conventional wisdom still holds true: A balanced diet combined with an active lifestyle is the best way to maintain a healthy body.
Kris Tollerson’s article, “Kids on the Move,” picks up the active lifestyle component and runs with it. On page 27, she describes a national kids’ fitness slump that occurred in the 80s, and she explains how corporate America — including Nike and the Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs of America — has been working to reverse the worrisome trend ever since. The Kids’ Bill of Rights to Play, outlined in the article, is an excellent resource for parents who want to make sure their kids are getting enough exercise AND fun.
Now, that’s a combination we could all benefit from this year.
As your family welcomes the start of 2005, try to make health and wellness priorities in your home. Eat right, stay active and enjoy everything life has to offer — even the carbs!