According to a recent viral video campaign, technology is all but consuming America’s youth. In the video, three generations of people were interviewed, and asked what their favorite childhood activities were. Twinkling, whimsical piano plays as the older generations recount their wholesome childhood hijinks of building forts, fishing in the creek, and dodging black bears. Ah, youth.
Predictably, the youngest generations’ answers aren’t as wispy and romantic as their elders’. Rather, the children seem to be terrifyingly attached to the digital world, reporting that they use their phones and tablets up to five hours each day. With a naive smile on her face, one little girl reports, “I would die without my tablet.”
At the end of the video, the parents watch the children answer with shock, expressing their grief for a generation lost to the mind numbing evils of technology. As screen turns dark, Nature Valley asks us to “rediscover nature”, presumably with a shockingly green foil wrapped granola bar in hand.
In some ways, Nature Valley is onto something. With a third of all children in the U.S. considered overweight, childhood obesity is now considered an epidemic in America. This is attributed to not getting enough physical activity, and a diet filled with processed, sugar-filled foods.
Sure, children could stand to get outside more and fill the daily recommended 60 minutes of activity. And of course everyone in America can stand to cut refined sugars and carbohydrates from their diet. It just seems a little counter-intuitive when these recommendations come from a company whose “all natural” products are teeming with high fructose corn syrup, maltodextrin, and high maltose malt syrups–three ingredients that definitely aren’t natural.
In fact, studies show that these highly processed ingredients contribute to childhood obesity, and lead to a myriad of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease. Talk about a lost generation, huh?