I’m not sure how I came across this little video (found at end of blog), but I’m glad I did. The children in our lives are listening to our every word and watching our every move. This includes how we view our bodies, the bodies of others, and our relationship with food. In the commercial they say, “I don’t know what calories are …, but my mom gets thunder storms over here because of pasta [points to her thighs]. … My mom’s on a diet and my dad’s on a diet … pizza is a womp womp for my mom … .”
And my favorite is watching the little girl in the video take a nonchalant bite of her cupcake after saying, “she only drinks coffee,” in reference to her mother. Well I have news for you sweetie, enjoy that cupcake while you can because I fear that soon enough you too will be “eating coffee” based on mom’s modeling. These children, so innocent and carefree, are watching and hearing everything that their parents and other adults are saying. What’s the message they’re getting – food is bad, food causes discomfort, food causes “thunder storms.” As a result, what’s the message they are receiving about body image and healthy eating?
I must say, it’s quite concerning. Adults have to start mirroring and modeling healthy habits for the children in their lives in order to increase the chances of producing children with health habits, good self-esteem, and positive body image. They hear us. They see us, so think about the message you’re sending the next time you grab your stomach and say,” that’s it, no more pizza for me.” I have news for all you parents, care providers, teachers, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, etc. – the kids are listening.