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The Benefits of a Healthy Childhood Diet

The benefits to health in later life that come from a healthy childhood diet are many and should not be overlooked, according to a new study.

So what is this fascinating study and how does it have the potential to have an affect on the millions of people who are worried about their health, their weight and their life expectancy these days?

Lifelong Study

The study was performed in the mind of a something over 50 year old writer who claims he ate healthily all through childhood and is now benefiting from that early start in life by maintaining a healthy weight and level of health despite leading a predominantly sedentary lifestyle for the last four years.

The writer to come up with this study of one, is writing this very article.

He was born in England in 1959 but spent seven years of his childhood in Australia up until the family's return to the UK in 1972. All through that childhood, he and his siblings ate home cooked meals made up of only fresh ingredients bought locally because his parents could not afford to buy frozen or pre-processed foods and the idea of eating out in a restaurant was out of the question.

The staple of this diet was local meat, either mutton, rabbit, or chicken as these were the cheapest, fish once a week, with potatoes and at least two but usually three other vegetables from the garden, depending upon what was in season. This would be either cabbage, kale, spinach, carrots, marrow, beetroot, leaf beet and onions. Salad crops included lettuce, tomatoes, celery, radish, cucumber and watermelon. The warm climate meant that leafy green vegetables were almost always available.

No Pesticides?

This meant that the writer was exposed to a minimum of pesticides and other chemicals that are liberally sprayed onto crops these days as the family could not afford to buy the crisp, new and perfect looking crops that were available in food stores in those days. So we had to make do with washing the bugs off the garden crops!

The upshot of that early diet is that it meant the writer started life with a really healthy makeup and all through life had suffered relatively little illness. If there are any statisticians reading, there is really not very much in the way of scientific evidence here.

Although it could be argued that a control group of millions of now obese young adults who were fed on childhood diets of junk foods and processed, pre-packed ready meals bear up the fact that a bad childhood diet leads to more health problems (look at the rise in diseases like asthma, eczema, type 2 diabetes, arthritis etc) in early adulthood and later life.

What About Lifestyle?

The fact that the writer spends on average 8 hours every day working at a computer, while continuing to eat a relatively good diet (marred only by an almost obsessive love of chocolate) should mean that by the standards accepted today as lifestyle affecting weight gain, he should be heading towards obesity. But he is not.

In fact he actually maintains a healthy weight for his height and build. He does get some exercise each day by taking the dogs for two or three walks every day, which helps to break up the time spent in front of the computer. So it would seem that most of the advice contained in this website can be borne out as true when it is taken into one's own lifestyle in that a good diet and daily exercise will help almost anyone maintain a healthy body weight.

The healthy start in life plays a big part in that health aspect now. It can be argued back and forth across the table all you like, but there is way too much evidence to suggest that a poor diet in early life leads to more health problems and that includes weight problems in later life.

That is according to this highly unscientific study of one, by the way.


Posted on Mon, 04 Oct 2010 in News | 6 Comments

6 thoughts on "The Benefits of a Healthy Childhood Diet"

Sandra says:

You were so lucky to have an upbringing like that. Most people never travel away from their home towns until they're grown up. You're so right about the way food is sold to us these days. It's not as fresh, clean and healthy as it looks or as we think it is.

Dana says:

It's certainly much harder to eat healthy these days when almost everything on sale in stores comes from intensive farms. It's either processed into additive-stuffed food products that look so attractive in their bright packages or it comes in the fresh food section in nice clean containers and looks too perfect to have been grown in dirt! The government is even trying to make it illegal to grow your own vegetables in your own backyard. How does that work? It just shows how much the government cares about our health.

Kisha says:

Hi, the biggest problem I'm having right now is that I'm overweight and diets don't work for me. I read this article and it sort of makes me realize that I had a terrible childhood diet of processed junk that mom bought in the supermarket and microwaved for our meals. She never cooked anything, it was always a TV dinner or takeout. No wonder I and my two sisters are fat!

I'm changing my diet and so are they after reading this and we're all going to cookery classes to learn how to cook real food for ourselves. Thanks!

Santoya says:

I personally feel that it turns people away if you force them to make a Blog Account cause they will be wary of their email address being sent out and the fire in the article effect will be worn out since a lot of the people have busy lives and don't want to bother if they don't blog much, so thanks for leaving it open to the public for posting comments, your blog is great!

Henry says:

That's a great "study" and one I can reallt relate to. I also grew up in the 1960s and my parents grew our own fruit and vegetables in the large back yard we had then. No chemicals ever went on that soil or those crops and I'm convinced the food tasted tons better than the chemically washed toxic stuff does today! I stayed fairly thin all my life, never feeling the need to eat anything that comes in a packet or any kind of fast food.

That study was not done on just one person, I feel. It was typical for a whole generation!

JC says:

Thank you so much for sharing. It is starting to become more uncommon to find quality material. Appears plenty of sites are providing nothing unique - just scraped content or rehashed rss feed. Your work is appreciated.