As an intelligent and creative collective, we are continually advancing. Everyday it seems we hear news of ways to improve our lives through changes in medicine, health, diet, technology. Just like PIxar’s dog, Dug who is distracted by every squirrel, we tend to be enchanted with the next “big thing”. We tend to jump on each new trend with a frenzy.
The question is, is our quality of life actually improving as a result of these advancements? Do they improve us as individuals living within a community? Do they improve us as families? Are we better human beings because of the knowledge and improvements we have made?
I am not a “life was so much better when…” or “in the old days”. I just look at the choices we have made and what it has caused us to either give up or gain and I am not sure that we have embraced the right choice in the end.
That is the crux of the issue, for every advancement we have made we have stepped into a new set of parameters in which to uphold and live out this creation or lifestyle.
Take a deceptively easy one: fast food.
We have accepted a lifestyle of “more”. More opportunities for our children means more activities after school and less time in the evenings and on the weekends. Less time means we have to prioritize and often the first to go is made at home family dinners.
According to News in Health, Jun 2017:
Researchers found that, for each year between 2002 and 2012, the rate of new cases of type 1 diabetes in youths under 20 rose by about 2%. The rate of new cases of type 2 diabetes in youths ages 10 to 19 increased by about 5%. Unlike type 1 diabetes, type 2 is seldom diagnosed in children younger than 10.
It makes sense that we learn how to manage diabetes, according to the same organization, the number one step in a positive direction is: make healthy food choices.
Prevention is key, so instead of managing diabetes, let’s find out how to prevent diabetes. You cannot prevent type 1, as this in your genes. However, type 2 you can. The number 1 way according to kidshealth.org is eat good for you foods. And the second way to prevent type 2 diabetes is to limit fast food and sugary sodas.
There is proof that fast food and a bad diet is linked to diabetes. Where is the research that shows we are using this “advancement” in lifestyle and convenience more and more?
A study done by Rupp Center said 91% of the 871 parents in 2016 who took an online survey purchased dinner or lunch in the previous week for their child at a large fast food restaurant chain.
“On average they’d gone 2.4 times per week.”
In 2013, 83% of 835 and in 2010, 79% of 771 parents had done the same.
Our reliance on this convenient lifestyle is going up, however, so is the number of overweight and sick children in our society. What is the cost of this “advancement” and are the side effects worth it?
Obviously, nothing is black and white, but if you are open to walking down the road less traveled, stretch your mind, your values and open your thoughts. Research, if you are willing to go that far and have some fabulous discussions with others around you.
There are so many ways we have advanced as a society, yet we have given up much in order to gain ground, in retrospect, were our choices worth it?