Am I really depriving my kids by not letting them have junk food?

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by Kking927, Aug 2, 2013.


Do you think kids that aren't allowed to have junk food are missing out on anything?

  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Undecided

  1. Kellyfacexx

    Kellyfacexx New Member

    I am 22, about to be getting married and starting a family in the near future. Growing up I was always allowed to have junk food, if my parents were ever running behind getting to work they would swing though a fast food joint to grab us something to eat. Every single day now it is a struggle not to drive up to the local burger joint and grab a dollar burger. So my answer would be no, they are not missing out on anything! Americans are becoming over weight, diabetes are at a high. You are starting off their lives by giving them something great! You are giving them the chance to be healthy, grow properly, and also not be tempted by greasy food that is awful for your digestive system. Children only miss something they have had for instance, if a child has never had a happy meal they do not even know it exists. There is nothing to be missing out on if they do not even know what all is out their. I think you have made a very wise parenting choice to keep junk food out of their daily lives, you are keeping your children healthy. When I have children I will not be feeding them junk food, at all. I have been trying to stay away from it myself. Since 2014 I have only had junk food one time. That bag of chips just looked so good! I craved it, and I felt like I needed it. I wish I could crave something like an orange, or grapes. That would much for such a healthier and happy lifestyle.
  2. goingforward123

    goingforward123 New Member

    It sounds like you have an informed philosophy about feeding your children healthy foods. That's great! You're absolutely right that junk food can be hard on the human body -- especially young, growing bodies. While children should put on weight while they are young, this should come from eating nutrient-rich foods such as whole grains, fruits and veggies, and dairy. Foods with plenty of vitamins, complex carbohydrates and proteins -- not the chemicals and additives. I sense from your post that your frustration isn't coming from actual worry that you're depriving your children of sweets -- as you're allowing them to have sweets, as you write -- but on the fact that your mother is not respectful of your philosophy. I suggest taking time to sit down with her once again and explain how important your healthy eating philosophy is and that it really hurts you that she has gone against your wishes. However also give her the opportunity to explain what happened; it may be that she has a different perspective on the events you've relayed.
  3. zweetieh

    zweetieh New Member

    It is quite sad when kids are drawn to all these junk foods. I think that if they'd never had them from the beginning they wouldn't feel drawn to it. I brought up my oldest daughter with oatmeal porridge for breakfast and whole wheat bread, this was all she knew and she loved it. She also loves fruit.
    But after meeting the grandparents who keep giving her biscuits, ice cream, sweets etc. she has become more drawn to junk food. Admittedly I play a big part in this as well as I don't tell them enough not to give her. But I tell them a lot of times and they look at me as if I make the girl suffer. It is also difficult to deprive them from giving her 'treats'. A frustrating situation.
  4. goingforward123

    goingforward123 New Member

    It sounds like you have an informed philosophy about feeding your children healthy foods. That's great! You're absolutely right that junk food can be hard on the human body -- especially young, growing bodies. While children should put on weight while they are young, this should come from eating nutrient-rich foods such as whole grains, fruits and veggies, and dairy. Foods with plenty of vitamins, complex carbohydrates and proteins -- not the chemicals and additives. I sense from your post that your frustration isn't coming from actual worry that you're depriving your children of sweets -- as you're allowing them to have sweets, as you write -- but on the fact that your mother is not respectful of your philosophy. I suggest taking time to sit down with her once again and explain how important your healthy eating philosophy is and that it really hurts you that she has gone against your wishes. However also give her the opportunity to explain what happened; it may be that she has a different perspective on the events you've relayed.
  5. goingforward123

    goingforward123 New Member

    I agree with you, @supermomof. It's not deprevation, but a gift to offer children the oppertunity to nurture their bodies with healthy food choices. Taste buds that favor sugars and salts, however, are not the only antagonists in this story. It's difficult to eat healthy foods, and to convince others that healthy foods are best for children because of the social and economic factors that promote fast food/junk food. It's to the benefit of corporations and agriculture businesses that consumers find their mass produced food tasty. Selling someone on the imperfect-looking organic apple grown by a local farmer -- for more money! -- is actually costlier.
  6. Siglenka_Alpha

    Siglenka_Alpha New Member

    A bit old topic (August), but I'd say the kids are not missing anything at all. What's there to 'miss'? They will reach puberty and start breaking rules anyway, so there's no fear in missing the great enjoyments of JUNK food.

    It's also ridiculous that someone would actually doubt their, IMO, very good decision after being very well informed about particular diet. From my point of view, sure, I'd give them candies more often, but if you feel that's not the way to go then DON'T DO IT. What if you were living somewhere in Alaska where there's no so much junk food?

    Moderation sounds logical, but I'd say listen to yourself and make sure your kids grow up to be healthy and normal. Junk food is bad, everyone knows it and accepts it. It's just the matter of attitude towards consumption.
  7. Sylvia Kananu

    Sylvia Kananu New Member

    You are actually doing the best sacrifice to your kids. Junk food has several effects on the bodies of kids. this type of food contain high levels of sugar and fats which definitely lead to your children becoming obsess or suffering from other diseases like arthritis,heart diseases and diabetes. Let your kids live healthy do not let them take junk food.
  8. art4

    art4 New Member

    First Kking927, I would like to applaud you for not succumbing to the pressures of society. If eating healthily was easy, then we would not have the worst obesity epidemic in history. Eating better is more than a diet- it’s a lifestyle. Choosing vegetables and fruits over fast foods should be respected and not criticized. You have your children’s best interest at heart and they will reap the benefits when they get older. You are protecting them from many ailments and exorbitant medical bills that are sometimes attached to a poor diet.

    As a child, you really do not have much of a choice, you do not have a job to buy your own food, so it’s either eat the vegetables and beans or don’t eat at all. After a while, the vegetables and beans look a lot better than hunger. As adults, we have a choice, unfortunately, what some of us lack the most willpower and discipline. The earlier we begin a habit, the easier it is to stick to it.

    Unless your mother or friends will pay the medical bills for your child from poor diets, what you feed your child is not their concern or responsibility. It appears that you are providing healthy foods they like so they are not deprived.

    Your mother’s priority may be centered on being a fun grandmother-which is understandable. Note she may still look at you as her little child. If given the choice of feeding your children junk food or not seeing them, hopefully she would choose to not give them junk food. Then she will begin to see how serious you are. I am sure your mother does not mean them any harm; she just has a different mentality. You are doing the right thing. Stick to your guns, don’t back down and eventually your mother acquiesce to your demands. Good luck.
  9. kevin goodman

    kevin goodman New Member

    Maybe you are to some degree,but they will thank you later.i admire you for doing that because so many kids are
    are fat and have diet related diseases.i think more parents should do what you do
  10. tickle

    tickle New Member

    I understand what you are saying with regard to how the children's dietary requirements should be handled, however the emotional imput from the grandmother should also be taken into consideration, this can be a very important connection for children. Maybe a frank discussion around what is acceptable as a treat may be required(possibly not something food related).
  11. kevin goodman

    kevin goodman New Member

    i think what you are saying is correct.its not an easy thing for want things that are not the best,and when
    you factor in other peoples input that may add to the situation.whatever you do,keep up the good work:)
  12. tickle

    tickle New Member

    I can understand how tough it is for the OP'er though, it's hard sometimes to express(in a nice way) to the preceding generation, your way of doing things. It has been this way for thousands of years.
  13. Lax008

    Lax008 New Member

    Two friends of mine have one kid each, one of them allows their kid to eat 'junk food' and the other doesn't let their kid eat the surgery foods you are talking about except for at birthday parties etc much like yourself.
    Since sugar now days is labeled the new age cocaine of the food industry it is really obvious that my friend who allows their kid junk food is becoming and going to become dependant on these junk foods as a result of the sugar content and the kid is only 5 years old. Whereas my friend who does not allow junk food to their kid is really active and is not dependant on any junk food and has a healthy food balance. Don't get me wrong he looks forward to having the so called junk food at parties etc but its within moderation and the kid 'looks forward' to those days instead of taking them for granted and not throwing a tantrum every time he cant get a mars bar or snickers every time your at the store.
  14. MenollyGirl

    MenollyGirl New Member

    Several different issues seem to be present here. 1) You seem to be feeling inadequate as a parent. 2) You seem to have some boundary issues with your mom that need to be faced.

    Let's look at the question itself. "Am I really depriving my kids by not letting them have junk food?" Right there, you are questioning your healthy choices. I am a parent of three, and we rarely have junk food in the house. There are several reasons for this. We don't need them to be healthy, we don't need them to satisfy a basic need, and we are teaching our kids to be moderate in their eating, so that their entire life will be healthier. If it feels right to you to not have junk food around, but you make healthier alternatives (whole oatmeal cookies with carob chips, for example), you are doing what you feel is right. And you should stand by your decision and feelings. We have instincts for a reason. We should use them.

    You also brought up the tension between yourself and your mother. I would say that if the kids see her once a week or more, you should talk to her, and come to a compromise, away from the children. If they see her less than that, I would still suggest talking to her, so you can express how you are feeling. "Mom, I feel you are teaching my children to disregard my rules when I am not around by letting them have lots of junk food without my permission, and by sneaking it behind my back. I am hoping this is not intentional."

    You mentioned that you offer alternative sweets, so I don't think moderation is really an issue. However, as they grow older, there will be more and more sweet things put in their faces. Will you be trick or treating with them as they get older? What do you plan to do about the huge amounts of pure junk that they will get then? Will you keep it, and ration it out (A personal choice of mine!) Or will you limit how many houses they get to go to? Ultimately it depends on your parenting choice, and what feels right to you. Whatever you choose, you should talk to your mom, so that those negative feelings do not turn into something even worse.
  15. tracysheppard79

    tracysheppard79 New Member

    I personally do not think children are missing out on anything by not being allowed an abundance of junk food. You stated you allow them to have sweets, cake, ice cream, etc., but it sounds like you allow it in healthy moderation, so therefore I don't believe you are denying them anything, you are only managing their intake. There are also ways to naturally sweeten foods that allow them to remain healthy, such as honey, fruit juices, etc.

    I have always managed what my children eat and how much they eat, and I have found that they now prefer a variety of healthy foods over junk food and even feel ill if they receive too much junk food when they are not under my supervision. They have also learned to say "no thank you" when offered foods they know are not good for them, and it removes the peer pressure when it is their choice. Grandma won't push the food if she knows it is their choice not to have it.
  16. Canoegirl

    Canoegirl New Member

    Junk food is not essential to the diet of the human body. This has become a purely "western" thought that junk food is okay. Food can often take the place of comfort and security in people (hence obesity rates - in some cases - rising). When junk food is eliminated from any diet the person is healthier and they begin to look for comfort and security in the right places.
  17. Amitch60

    Amitch60 New Member

    My own mother did this for a period of time with me. When I was very little, my entire family are junk food. Then, whenever I was 9 years old, my mom went on a diet and thus changed her children's eating habits as well. At first, I craved junk food and was miserable, but as time went on, I came to enjoy the healthy food we were eating. I don't think your kids are missing out on anything. You are setting your children up to have healthy habits. I found that after eating healthy food for a long time, junk food tasted gross to me. Your kids won't crave the junk food that is bad for them anyway, and will go into adulthood making healthy choices. As far as your mom goes, she needs to respect your wishes. You are their mom, and whether she agrees with you or not, she should follow your rules. Maybe you can find healthy foods that seem like treats, such as low fat frozen yogurt or things like this that you feel comfortable with your mom giving them. That way she will still feel like she is able to spoil them, but they aren't getting things you feel they shouldn't be eating.
  18. Lethal63

    Lethal63 New Member

    Yes. The moment they grow up and taste their first junk food, they might go overboard and become obese. If a study was to be done I bet the adults who are morbidly obese missed out on junk food at some point in their lives. Either because of parenting or reasons like costs. In my country junk food is very expensive compared to health foods so you find those that have been raised in poor families and couldn't afford the junk food become very huge because they get into a junk food frenzy to payback for all the times they wanted junk food when they grow up and earn their own money. These is best case scenario. I know another person who the parents were rich BUT were health freaks. She is now excessively obese even getting up is a workout and she is still increasing weight. The ones who could not afford it do work out so they're maintaining their weight and trust me, they can run for five miles even with their weight. The one who was told no junk food by the parents is worse off.
  19. IamJek

    IamJek New Member

    As a parent, we always want what's best for our children. And one way to ensure that is to keep them healthy. Not giving them junk food doesn't mean they are being deprived on anything. But I do believe that everything in moderation is the way to good health. Candies or chips are okay every once in a while. It's critical to teach kids healthy habits from a young age so that they can make responsible decisions for themselves as they grow older. As long as it's balanced with a good diet and exercise then it should be fine.
  20. Beverly

    Beverly Administrator Staff Member

    Self control is one of the best skills you can teach your child, especially when it comes to unhealthy foods/snacks.
  21. Pink_Turtle

    Pink_Turtle New Member

    As many of the other members had say moderation is the key to not “overwhelm” the kids with the healthy habits. My mother use to do this and honestly as a kid when I wasn’t with her I run to get any sweet or candy I could eat because she forbidden to eat them so bad that I just wanted to try them all and do exactly the opposite of what she intended me to do. I just recommend not to forbidden the junk food as something you want them to do but explain to them why you’d like them to eat healthy food instead.
  22. Dparagon

    Dparagon New Member

    Moderation is key in everything today. As a parent who wants his/her children to have better health, depriving your kids junk food could be of help in maintaining a good health as well as controlling their weight. More also, it is important to call them and educate them on the health implications of taking eating junk foods.

    Sometimes, there are situations in which junk foods or snacks can be man's best meal. It could during work, school, during ill health etc. In such situations, it is advisable to have them. But having these foods as ones steady routine isn't recommended health wise.
  23. webgirl5000

    webgirl5000 New Member

    You aren't depriving their bodies, because of course, junk food has no nutrients. However, they could feel deprived because they know of the options in the world. I follow an eating plan that could work well for your kids. I eat a sensible healthy diet during the week, then one day (typically Saturday) I have a meal where I eat anything and everything I want. This is healthy for the metabolism and it helps me to feel like I'm not missing out on junk food that I like. If your kids know that they can sometimes have junk food, it might help them not crave it so much.
  24. freeze

    freeze New Member

    I think it is good for the kids to learn healthy habits from a tender age. Exposing them to junk food could lead to terrible repercussions in the nearest future as we can see in so many instances today. May be once in a while if absolutely necessary, but there are healthier snacks out there which I believe they will love.
  25. imonline

    imonline New Member

    I think what you're doing is great! I've never heard of an ailment called sweet deprivation. There are plenty of fruits that contain enough sugar that should satisfy their sweet craving.
  26. Yiskah

    Yiskah New Member

    No you are saving them!!! Unfortunately my education in such matters came late and my kids are now teenagers and its near impossible to keep them away from it. Now we are over weight, sick and run down due to all the crap they put in packaged foods. Company's are not looking out for your family at the very least, at the worse they are out to harm on purpose! Just the other day I learned that several big company's use aborted fetal tissue in the development of their products! I mean COME ON!!! REALLY? It hurts my brain,soul and body that someone even considered it ok to do. Disgusting and deplorable!
  27. damagedmonkey

    damagedmonkey New Member

    Honestly I believe people should stop their kids from eating junk food.

    here is the thing: large food chains and companies aim their products towards little kids because they will be consumers for the rest of their lives. Happy meals with toys are a great example. So McDonalds lets little kids think they like their food just by offering toys. This immediately becomes a problem when the kid is grown up and addicted to said food.
    If you restrict it you may me making the kid miss out on some things but later they will grow up to be happy and healthy!
  28. James Arthur

    James Arthur New Member

    It's less about depriving them of junk food and more about depriving them of a reward. You should always try to keep your kids away from items that are bad for their health such as junk food but it is also bad to never reward them for eating healthy or for doing a certain task. I believe junk food as a treat and in moderation is fine as long as they have a healthy diet
  29. Vivekananda

    Vivekananda New Member

    Junk food and obesity go hand in hand. Obesity apart, there are many other issues unknown that keep troubling the body until the issue gets fully blown. Since ages, we have known that junk food is not good for health. And proofs enough exist everywhere to be seen. Whatever tastes good is bad for health and whatever tastes bitter or even tasteless is quiet good for health. Junk food mostly consists of fried items, creamy layers and of course, the dangerous cooked oil. If not fresh, the preparation gets contaminated from salmonella and other bacteria as well.

    Junk food always tastes yummy. Taken in small quantity and once in a while is fine. But then, the taste buds stimulate that part of the brain that goes berserk to have more and as frequently as out of control. We are prone to go weak kneed and fall prey to the junk. Not only the kids, even the elderly are prone to these attacks. In such a scenario, isn't it best to avoid giving junk food to kids!?!

    But, how long and far can one go to protect the kids from tasting the junk food!? Just impossible to hold up. Therefore, let the kids have the junk food once in a while and in small quantities only. Kids that are occupied with some or the other activity other than gnawing on anything are the ones that can be kept away from junk food for long periods of time. There are lot of things that can keep a child busy and the elders should strive towards that end. Else, what is the use of having such beautiful kids and see them suffer from ailments!?! Easier said than done; isn't it so? Well, where there is will there is way and therefore make your kid sway away from those junkier ways.
  30. Annag

    Annag New Member

    I grow up in a junk food free house and it totally back fired. When I finally had access to junk food I lost it and ended up developing a severe eating disorder. A lot of other eating disorder patients I know grew up in houses with militant rules about food. The only way to teach your kids moderation and a healthy relationship with food is to demonstrate it and by setting such strict rules you're ultimately failing to show kids how to make appropriate food choices. I'd recommend you start allowing some mild junk food in your household in moderation.

    I'm not saying you should feed your kids Cheetos for breakfast. But it's mostly people who live on extreme ends of the healthy vs unhealthy spectrum that struggle later in life. Balance is the most important thing in a lot of aspects in life but especially in diet.

    You might want to consider meeting with a nutritionist to help guide you through teaching your kids about appropriate and realistic nutrition in everyday life. With all due respect, I'm concerned by this extreme fixation on "foods we view as unhealthy". That can sometimes be a sign of disordered eating or other mental health problems in. It probably isn't but you might want to see someone just to check on it cause some people struggling with such problems don't realize it.

    But ultimately yes, kids in completely junk food free homes do miss out on understanding moderation and being empowered into making their own well educated choices about food.

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