Obesity Rates Soaring Because Of New Requirements

Students being forced to take a gym class? Crazy! The debate about if students should be forced to take a gym class or not has been going on for years. Should they be forced to or not?

Obesity Rates

Well in today’s society most people think that students should be forced to take a gym class all throughout grade school because obesity rates in the past 10 years have went up tremendously.

Rates have went up so tremendously recently because of all the fast food restaurants showing up everywhere and of course there becoming more and more convenient than they ever have been now days. Another reason there rising so much is because of schools cutting out phy-ed classes in their students schedules or in the core curriculum.


The one biggest problem starts with students getting the right amount of exercise each day. Especially when on average students sit through their classes throughout the day for 6 plus hours. Then when they get home and have to do there homework later in the night they spend another couple of hours sitting and doing that. Every state has a different requirement then the next state does for how long elementary students must get each day of physical activity while going to school.

The majority of schools in the U.S. don’t require students to take a gym class or allow them to have recess in their schedule anymore unlike how they use too have many requirements for it.  

Kid Playing/Swimming/FlickerCC

Average high schools now days only require you to take 1 semester of phy-ed throughout the whole time you’re in high school which is about 4 years. So out of the 4 years high school students spend there they have only taken half a year of phy-ed. That is not enough physical activity at all. The institute of medicine suggests that schools should add phy-ed into the core curriculum. The obesity rates have went up so much in the past 35 years for children ages 6-11 years old in the United States. Mostly because of all the new technology coming out that students sit and play for hours on end and so many fast food places being added to our menus. Too many kids are being considered ¨obese” or ¨overweight¨ now days.

Researchers composed a test to see if the obesity rate of children would go down at all without having to take time out of other classes or hurting students grades. Researchers found out a lot of helpful information about kids exercising in the article  ABC News.

Sports & Activities 

Students who play sports outside of school are nowhere near meeting the levels of activity during their sport practices that they should be. After sports most athletes go home and sit down in front of the tv with their favorite junk food snack so all that running they just did at practice was just wasted. Also the team treats that the parents are required to bring to practice or games normally are not healthy at all and are chips or cookies.

Kids Playing Soccer/pixabay

Athletes only run for an average of 15 minutes during a 2 ½ hour practice so they end up eating more calories than they burn off. After practice most kids will have the team treat or go home and eat a bag of chips or they might even stop somewhere for a quick bite to eat because there parent is too busy to make a good dinner for them. The likelihood of the snack or dinner being very unhealthy is very high. All those calories they eat were much unneeded. This is a  problem that the parent and the athlete don’t realize and probably never will.   

Many different people and organizations have been fighting for Phy-Ed to be put back into core curriculums at schools. Having gym class everyday doesn’t just help obesity rates it also helps kids focus on work in the classroom.

Students who are involved in sports outside of school can normally focus better and tend to get better grades all around compared to the students who are not involved in any sports at all.

Michelle obama has tried to help obesity rates by regulating what schools serve for lunch. She also encourages students to exercise as much as possible and of course limit the amount of screen time at home and in school. She has made the first major change to school lunches in the past 15-20 years.

Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act

Michelle is trying to keep up with the latest foods and nutrition so they keep students as healthy as possible.

School lunches use to be completely different than how they are now. It’s a really good thing what Michelle has done with the the lunches but unfortunately kids hate school lunches now.

Michelle Obama got The Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act signed by Obama in 2010 and this is the reason for all the changes that students are not reacting well to.

Whole Grain Everything

All foods served in school cafeterias have been changed in many ways. Like things from portion size all the way to turning everything into whole grain.

Whole Grain Bread/FlickerCC

Turning Everything into whole wheat from bread to spaghetti all the way to rice crispy bars. Schools and the government don’t really have the right funding and budgets for this new change in 100% whole grain food. Whole grain food coast quit a bit more then regular. Along with that some cultures do not accept whole grain foods to be eaten. Soon they will also be regulating what is sold in the vending machines at schools too.

The problem with all of this is students just dump anything they do not want or does not look good right in the trash instead of eating it like they use too.

The number of students buying school lunches has also dropped dramatically since 2012 because if students do not like what is being served they will just bring there own lunch instead of eating the schools.

The food costs now days for lunch are about $13 billion dollars a year. “The last thing we can afford to do right now is play politics with our kids health” Said Michelle Obama. There are more ways than just changing the school lunches to help with obesity. Mitchell could change gym requirements to help lower obesity in America.  

Featured Image /Pixabay

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