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Youth Giving Voice to the Obesity Epidemic: A Need That Rises Out of Food Consumption

Youth giving voice to the obesity epidemic is a subject matter that can wait no longer. The number of obese youth continues to rise and is becoming an epidemic. Our life styles and the complex colonization that we are a part of today, sucks us into a maze of becoming overweight.

The study unit that follows provides youth with handles for first understanding the seriousness of this epidemic and provides a bases for a foundational understanding of who gives voice to the food selection that eventually reaches their tables - politicians, big business, or the media. Students then move on to explore the eating habits of people throughout various ages through literature for clues from the Middle Ages to modern day writing. From these readings, they will calculate and compare BMI and compare the caloric intake for each time period to answer the question of when did obesity become a problem, and is it tied to food selection? They will compare eating habits of their peers, family and community and calculate and compare their findings. From these finding, they will prepare an oral presentation for their classmates on their findings and opinion on this subject as they give voice to the obesity epidemic.

The final charge to students will be to begin to develop their own voice concerning food intake. What they will and won’t eat is in their hands. What the future holds for them as the future consumers is in their hands. The end result should be a clear understanding of the epidemic and a challenge to make adjustments in food choices in light of their new found understanding.

Rosa Dubisette
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