Thursday, September 1, 2011

Maggie Goes on a Diet: Children's weight loss books-- Helpful or harmful?

The book has not even been released yet, and it is already sparking major controversy.

According to the Washington Post, "Author Paul Kramer has said his intent was to write a story with an important message to children about eating properly and maintaining a healthy physique, especially given the obesity epidemic."

Is it too much too soon?

At what age should kids start watching what they eat?

One of the biggest controversies about this book is the term "diet." He could have said, "Maggie and her healthy lifestyle," or "eating healthy." However, a diet is a term that is frowned upon, essentially because, in the words of Psychology of Eating Expert, Karen Schachter:

"...diets simply don’t work. Research suggests that something like 95 percent of people who actually lose weight on a diet, end up gaining it back within a couple of years or sooner. When the “diet cycle”(which is marked by feeling deprived, developing cravings, feeling guilty and ashamed, overeating, and then starting again with a new diet) begins in childhood, it can set the stage for a lifelong struggle with weight, chronic dieting, overeating, low self-esteem, and weight and food obsession."

Also, why is it just about a girl? This, in my opinion, contributes to the sexualized image a female, that plagues us every day.

What do you think about this?

Comment and let me know your opinions.

The book is scheduled to be published in October of this year.