Focusing on childhood obesity in brazil, it’s causes, and it’s effects. Way Beyond Weight brings into perspective what it means to have access to limited education in regards to nutrition and a healthy lifestyle. This targets not just Latin America but North America as well in it’s analyzation of how obesity affects the every day lives of children. It brings to light the fact that parents and children alike are indeed the unwitting victim’s of marketing executives who are designing products with the direct intention of being appealing to children whether they are healthful or not.
Key points are a discrepancy between money spent on educating children in the US towards active healthy lifestyles, and the marketing budgets of snack food and fast food companies. The film points to a decreased affordability and availability of healthy food choices as being at the forefront of the obesity battle which further hampers the ability of many families to educate their children on healthy food options at home. Soda is a main feature in most of these children’s live’s, along with other snack foods, while fresh fruits and vegetables are not. Fruit has been pushed out of the norm so far in fact that it is viewed as a lesser food and at points in the film it is even mentioned that their is a stigma surrounding children who bring produce to school because it’s so different than their peers. Attention is called to the costs associated with healthy foods through school lunch programs which are also found to do much in the way of promoting healthy eating or educating students on balanced meals.
By far the most enlightening aspect of the film is the children’s lack of basic nutritional understanding. When asked if sugar was a carbohydrate many adults were even unable to respond with the correct answer and when presented with a variety of fruits or vegetables many people were unaware what the proper name for each of them was. This served to highlight that the knowledge of such things which many take for granted may not be so common place as believed and that further education is a MUST on all fronts in the realm of nutrition.