- Review: New Prescription for Childhood Obesity
Review: New Prescription for Childhood Obesity
Norm Goldman, B.A. LL.L, is the
Publisher & Editor of Bookpleasures, which he created in 2002.' Practicing law for over 35 years enabled Norm to transfer and apply to
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Author: Billy C. Johnson, M.D., Ph.D.
When I am people watching in my neighbourhood shopping mall, it never ceases to amaze me as to the number of overweight children that catch my attention.
As Dr. Billy Johnson points out in his exceptional guide, New Prescription for Childhood Obesity, America is now facing a real crisis when it comes to childhood obesity. Did you know that there are over 9 million children in the USA alone with childhood obesity? And worldwide it is has reached epidemic proportions with over 155 million affected.
Dr. Johnson is a medical graduate from the University of Florida and he did his residency in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Maimonedes Medical Center in New York. He holds a Ph.D in Molecular Biology/Microbiology and has practiced medicine in Virginia and Connecticut. In addition, he has written many articles for medical and scientific journals. He takes the problem of childhood obesity very seriously.
In the introduction to New Prescription for Childhood Obesity, Dr. Johnson fervently maintains, which incidentally forms the basis of his book, that the root cause of obesity and chronic diseases related to obesity for both children and adults is the low-grade silent inflammation associated with extra abdominal fat, along with low levels of antioxidans and phytonutrients. So grave is this that Dr. Johnson affirms that as the waistlines of our youth increase as they grow older, so does the prevalence of chronic degenerative diseases that once would only be seen in adults such as type 2 diabetes that now affect over a half a million children in the United States.
To conclude that it is quite frightening to envisage that there will be more and more children being treated with potent drugs for cholesterol and arterial plaques is an understatement. Just think about the ramifications when a child becomes an adult and the quality of life he or she will be required to endure.
In New Prescription for Childhood Obesity, Dr. Johnson examines all of the dangers of childhood obesity, its causes and what parents can do about it. His approach is quite different than the traditional method, which advocates that to reduce weight and fat it is necessary to eat less and exercise more, which according to Dr. Johnson does not work very well over the long term. It is his contention that it is essential to address the root cause which he breaks down into oxidative stress, insulin resistance and the low-grade chronic inflammation that are triggered by many factors such as unhealthy foods as well as environmental causes as exposure to pesticides, industrial pollutants, and toxins.
It should be mentioned, as Dr. Johnson points out in his introduction, that the book is intended for parents who want to help their children (5-12 years old) to develop healthy eating habits in order to improve the quality of their weight, body fat and health, and particularly targeting young children who might be at risk.
The book divides itself into fourteen chapters, five appendixes, selected references and an index. The first section of the book deals with the science and essential philosophy of healthy eating wherein Dr. Johnson counsels his readers that in order to fight obesity in children, it is necessary to pay particular attention to antioxidants and phytonutrients that are found in non-starchy vegetables and fruits.
Dr. Johnson’s program, which is explored in depth throughout the book, focuses on balanced nutrition that can be tailored to the level of physical activity on a meal-to-meal basis with stress reduction as an additional component.
If you are wondering what are antioxidants, Dr. Johnson informs us that they are: “phytonutrients or chemical compounds that neutralize free radicals and prevent them from causing damage to healthy cells and molecules like DNA, lipids (fats), proteins and cell membranes. Insufficient antioxidants in your children’s meals are the sole reason they store excessive abdominal fat that makes more inflammation in their bodies-leading to obesity and chronic diseases.” As for phytonutrients, we are informed that these are the health promoting bioactive compounds or nutrients found in plants including vegetables, fruits, beans, and soy.
From this brief introduction pertaining to the vocabulary that Dr. Johnson uses throughout his book, readers are presented with a road map as to how to combat child obesity. It is quite amazing how much information Dr. Johnson covers in fewer than two hundred pages where we learn about the strategies for reducing obesity and inflammation, what is silent inflammation, medical consequences of obesity, food essentials, becoming knowledgeable and proactive pertaining to the foods we eat, recognizing food diversity, vitamins, minerals and essential fats, how to draw up a healthy shopping list, planning meals with your child, breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner. The appendixes are very interesting and informative as they deal with sample daily meal plans, how children can have some fun eating, shares responsibility, and several recipes.
An interesting sub-section of the book is the reference made to MonaVie Acai Berry Juice. According to Dr. Johnson one way to address the deficiency of antioxidants and phytonutrients in children’s diets is to supplement their diets with a unique formula that was recently discovered by scientists and available under the brand name MonaVie.
The key ingredient in MonaVie is the Acai Berry that grows at the top of tall palm trees in the Amazon Rainforest of Brazil. Dr. Johnson tells us that the Acai fruit has the highest antioxidant activity of any fruit or vegetable currently known on a gram-to-gram basis.
Dr. Johnson has a vast amount of experience dealing with the problem of child obesity and his experience shows, in -deed with his impressively researched and comprehensive study. It is difficult for me to think of a single issue that isn’t broached in New Prescription for Childhood Obesity. He is particularly to be commended for his clear easy to follow format and without doubt readers will undoubtedly benefit from a vastly improved sense of the subject and the tools necessary to combat child obesity.
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