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(Time)   Childhood obesity now said to be caused by *shakes Magic 8 ball* too much salt   ( divider line
    More: PSA, magic, childhood obesity, fruit juices, salts  
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1894 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Dec 2012 at 6:18 AM (5 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2012-12-11 02:30:03 AM  
3 votes:
"There's a lot of experimental evidence in animals and in adults that shows that the more salt you consume, the more you actually get thirsty and consume fluid," says Carley Grimes, the study's lead author, a dietitian and doctoral student at Deakin University in Australia. "The amount of salt in your blood rises and to control it, your body gets thirsty."

Any first year med student will tell you that it's a fact! So will any survivalist or seasoned outdoorsman.

Odd, though, when I was a kid we ate a lot of salt. No one had spent millions on studies to determine if it was harmful nor were there many other such seasonings, like Accent (monosodiumglutomate) or that all vegetable 'Dash'.

Athletic coaches of the time, especially down here in hot, humid, tropical Florida, gave their players salt tablets and malt pills during games. Players sweated out so much salt that they could get muscle cramps and spasms or irregular heartbeats. Malt tablets provided energy -- kind of like sports drinks today only without the sugar. Folks my age will remember the thick, cold Malted Milks of the time, made in ice cream parlors and the few fast food places. Sugar was added then to the powdered malt and everything mixed in a high speed blender.

I still recall stopping in at restaurants and the salt shakers on the tables were big, round, glass things, with some grains of rice in them. The rice absorbed the moisture in the air that would cause the untreated salt to clump, clot and even liquify.

Back on topic. Fat.

The overwhelming majority of kids of my time were not over weight. It was rare to find a fat kid. Most fat kids actually had genetic tendencies to fat or medical problems making them heavy. There were very few who got fat by pigging out.

Now, we did not have the vast selection of sweets, cookies and fatty snacks along with a burger stand on every corner, but we ate heartily. You sprinkled salt on ice cold watermelon slices (which had steeped for hours in huge, galvanized tubs of ice for hours uncut) and sugar on grapefruit.

Moms baked cookies, cakes and puddings. Pan gravy was nearly a staple at every supper, made from the drippings of the meat. Bacon grease was often preserved in the fridge to cook other things in for added flavor or to be spread cold on a thick slab of rye bread, topped with a bit of mustard, and eaten as a tasty snack. Jell-O had come out, along with Kool-aid -- both containing major amounts of sugar and consumed in huge amounts.

Deep south cooking tends to basically consist of deep fried everything and bread was eaten with nearly every meal, along with home made biscuits. Red-eye gravy and biscuits could put a pound on you if you walked too close to a serving.

Yet -- the majority of us kids were lean and healthy. We drank whole milk by the gallon because it was cheap, fortified with Vitamin D, calcium and good for us. Skim milk (low fat today) was for wimps.

We made home made ice cream, home made and delicious frostings (very unlike the bland, somehow always similar tasting canned frostings you get on grocery store deli cakes or buy in tins to smear on your own) and the fat on meats was considered tasty, not cut off and choice if fried a bit crispy. Especially pork fat.

And we used a lot of salt.

There were dangers about it -- such as being bad for heart patients or not having enough iodine in it which, if you didn't eat seafood, could give you goiters and other problems and too much of it could make you very, very thirsty.

Bar tenders learned about the latter part ages ago, which is why bars tended to have a selection of very salty snacks set out for drinkers to nibble on. The added salt made you thirsty, so you drank more beer. Folks used to add salt to beer that had gotten a bit flat to activate the fizz. Some just liked the taste in the booze.
So, why were we thin then, even consuming large amounts of fatty, salty foods, but now, with less fatty foods, there's an epidemic of flab spreading across the nation?


Us kids ran, walked, jumped, climbed trees, rode bikes, made and drove 'soap-box racers', red wagons, took Physical Education in school, did chores at home and played vigorous, sweat producing games.

I climbed trees, walked miles through wild woods, cut down trees with a hand ax, dug holes, built forts, rode my single speed, fat tired bike hundreds of miles and roughhoused with my friends.

Irritated by the crowded, noisy conditions on the school bus, I often rode my bike the several miles to school and back -- as did scores of other kids. The bike racks were often just packed. If not, then on most days I walked the half mile to and from the bus stop.
Going shopping usually meant parking the car and walking blocks around town. (No malls and shopping centers had just been invented.)

Most of us kids cut the lawns, with a push mower -- motorized but not self powered and few had a riding mower. We raked leaves. There were no easily handled chainsaws or leaf blowers. We swam in lakes, pools and the ocean. We camped 'rough', meaning we used tents not trailers or campers, cooked over fires where we had to find, harvest and cut the wood and most boats we used were rowed or paddled.

50% of what we did joyfully as kids is now forbidden today because you might get hurt and someone sued, preyed upon by a perv or various laws prevent it.

Simple, basic activities. No hours in front of the TV, video games or computer. Not very many powered labor saving devices. (Like, no electric can openers or microwaves.) Us kids learned to repair flat bike tires on the go. We learned to adjust the chains.
I don't see very many kids on bikes anywhere, anymore. In my day, a bike was as necessary to a kid as a weapon is to a soldier. If you didn't own one, then you were weird.

The incidents of fast food places has gone up several hundred percent. 90% started 'super-sizing' after the 7-11 introduced the half gallon fountain drink. Along came fatty heat and eat TV dinners and scores of equally fatty frozen microwave snacks and meals.

Sugar in different form rather than the usual cane version started appearing in foods and drinks. Corn syrup seemed to become the 'in' additive. Frito-Lay popped up and soon offered scores of tasty, fatty snacks. Burger King and Mac Donald's started matching each other store for store. Up popped Kentucky Fried Chicken -- now KFC -- and Taco Bell ran the good Taco restaurants out of business with their cheap, fatty, low vegetable Taco's and refried, lard loaded beans.

The end result?

Tubs of lard all over the place, waddling on two feet, demanding special rights because they're FAT, XL clothing started replacing Medium versions. (Even today I have a tough time finding adult pull over shirts in medium. Most are large, extra-large and extra-extra-large.)

Vigorous activity is discouraged. Going outside is discouraged. There around 200 nasty things 'out there' that will endanger your little spawn from the sun to the pervs lurking behind every twig. You no longer are required to take physical education in many schools.

The electronic age squashed many of the fun, activities kids used to enjoy inside and out. Then along came Children's Rights, where your folks can get in legal trouble if they dare to force your lazy arse outside to play or try and restrict your consumption of fatty, sugary products.

No. Salt is not the main problem as to why our kids are turning into chunks of flab and later, into adult chunks of lard. Sheer stupidity from society is.
2012-12-11 07:17:41 AM  
1 vote:

firefly212: lol, you ever try to play pong for 4 hours a day? Shiat is fun, but nowhere near as fun as building tire forts or making bows and arrows out of sticks and balloons and chasing friends around. Blades of Steel was amazing, but still nowhere near as fun as actually playing street hockey.

Really not sure where people go with this. Why does it have to be one or the other? When I was a kid my parents held me to high academic expectations (Asian family and all that), I played my NES into the ground and still had time to play outside. Youth comes with infinite energy. I probably got about 6 hours of sleep a night and not for my mothers' lack of effort to make sure I went to bed on time. I hated sleeping; there was so much to do.

If there's any notable difference between then and today, it's how much less kids are trusted. When I was in middle school I would bike two miles (one way) to school some afternoons to take clarinet lessons and thought nothing of it (except that I hated taking the lessons). I know some people are going to take that as "I walked 30 miles through the snow uphill" sort of anecdote, but that's missing the point and that's precisely the problem. I'm not saying it was hardship; it was NOTHING to bike a mile or three to do something. I was the 90-pound pencil-necked geek everyone picked on and my friends and I would do it just to get to a place to hang out. It was just what I did because my parents worked and I was too young to drive. Nowadays parents drive their kids if the trip is three effin' blocks. I bet if I have kids I'd probably get imprisoned for child abuse if they ask to walk a couple miles and I just say go ahead.
2012-12-11 06:56:57 AM  
1 vote:

log_jammin: stuhayes2010: No, too much Xbox. We ate crap as children. But we ran outside, ran inside, never sat down.

Video games have been around a lot longer than XBOX.

Yup. We had
timesillustrated.comView Full Size

And still probably put more miles on our bicycles in a day than most interstate truckdrivers.
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