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Why Did American Teenagers Stop Eating?
Why have American teenagers stopped eating healthy? The American people have not stopped dressing, playing sports, working, or traveling, so why did they stop eating healthy? Is it because American teenagers today have grown up with junk food that they do not know how to eat healthy? Maybe it is because Americans are so involved with many other activities that they cannot find the time to eat a decent meal. Whatever the specific reason may be, American teenagers have stopped eating healthy and something needs to be done. This paper examines the reasons as to why American teenagers have stopped eating healthy, but first it explains some reasons as to why teenagers eat so unhealthy.
It is not enough to simply say that American teenagers have unhealthy eating habits. Although the eating habits vary from teenager to teenager, that is to say some eat too much while others eat too little, the general reasons as to why this fact is true needs to be examined and should be understood by everyone. Teenagers are unhealthy eaters because they eat to free themselves from boredom, they go out to eat to have a fun at night, and they eat because food is always available to them one way or the other. Some teenagers do not eat enough and when they do eat they eat junk food because it tastes better than “healthy” food. Truly, teenagers are not healthy eaters.
Few people besides nutritionists and dietitians are aware of the reasons as to why the American people have such horrible eating habits. One reason as to why teenagers are unhealthy eaters is that eating provides something for them to do when they are bored. Eating while doing homework helps keep teenagers focused and awake so that they can get their homework done in a timely manner. Keeping their mouth occupied with food will stop them from talking to others around them. People who like what they are eating will most likely keep on eating and hold off on a conversation. If teenagers just watched television while doing homework, they would most likely watch the television screen rather than do their homework. Eating, unlike television, does not provide a physical attraction to stop the person from doing his/her homework and stare at the food. In addition, because teenagers eat while doing homework they will often eat something that is good. Because most teenagers could care less about nutrition, they will not eat vegetables or fruit. Instead, they will eat snacks like Doritos, fruit roll-ups, and popcorn while doing homework.
Another reason as to why teenagers are unhealthy eaters is that dining is a past time activity. When going out for the night, there are millions of restaurants to eat at, which provide something to do other than hanging out at someone’s house or going to a movie. Eating at a restaurant also lets teenagers get out of their cars and sit down at a social place where they can enjoy themselves more. The fact that most teenagers do not like to spend large sums of money leads them to fast food restaurants, which are not the healthiest places to eat. Places such as Denny’s, Dairy Queen, and Taco Bell provide good food at cheap prices along with an environment where teenagers can be teenagers. Teenagers still attend fancy places and expensive restaurants every once in a while just to have some fun, but most of the time they pick places where they can have fun for a cheap price.
Whether teenagers are watching television, working on homework, or even just sitting around with nothing to do, many can be seen constantly eating. More often than not they are chewing on a candy bar, drinking a carbonated beverage, or eating some other kind of snack. This is due to the fact that there is always food available; meaning that they can go to a candy store, they can buy snacks from a snack machine, and they can go to a concession stand. In addition, teenagers are always thinking about food because they are constantly watching television or reading magazines. There are numerous advertisements for food that lead teenagers to think about food. For example, McDonalds and Burger King must have at least 15-20 advertisements per day trying to persuade people to buy their food. Teenagers who watch a ton of television, and most do, will start to think about food. Maybe they end up taking a drive to the fast food restaurant or maybe they just go into their kitchen and grab a snack all because of one food advertisement. One way or the other they were led to eat something.