Food marketing criticism tainted by political slogans

Food marketing which promotes junk food to children is a real problem, but raising the issue with ‘neoliberal’ labels taints the message of Darren Powell, a lecturer in health education at the University of Auckland.

NZ Herald: Needs of children, not Big Food, must win out

It looks as though our Advertising Standards Authority will, once again, fail to adopt a strict code of food advertising to children and young people. This is hardly surprising.

In neoliberal societies such as our own, the wants of the private sector frequently take priority over the needs of citizens, including children. This is especially true for the “Big Food” industry which includes the multinational food and drink producers with massive marketing power.

The marketing of multinationals, especially when it involves the promotion of unhealthy eating, should be addressed, but including vague political slogans doesn’t help Powell’s case. Labelling it a neoliberal problem may please a few political activists but it will turn off ordinary people, and also those with the power to do something about the problem.

The ‘Big Food’ label doesn’t help either, that smacks of us against them.

A raft of public health experts, journalists, researchers and the public blame Big Food products, lobbying and marketing practices for the childhood obesity “crisis”.

Claiming the support of ‘the public’ is a common and lame political practice. Without any substantiation it is poor coming from an academic.

Powell does make some important points.

Although on the surface it looks as if corporations are promoting healthy lifestyles and health products, at the same time they are stealthily creating and profiting from a new market – advertising “health” to children.

An example of how devious and successful fast food companies can be is the association of Ronald MacDonald with child health in Auckland (and nationally).

This is where the narrow focus on “junk” food advertising restrictions is naive, even dangerous: all advertising to children is potentially “unhealthy”.

But it’s totally unrealistic to protect all children for advertising – and futile when it is parents that make diet decisions for their children.

Children are being conditioned to believe attaining good health is as simple as listening to advertising and consuming the right products. This deflects attention from complex and powerful determinants of health, such as genetics, poverty, colonisation and inequality.

Should children be educated on complex determinants of health such as genetics, poverty, colonisation and inequality? Should they have Politics 101 at pre-school?

Through marketing, children’s understanding of health is being altered. It is moving away from traditional and cultural perspectives of well-being and towards a corporate-friendly version of health that emphasises individual consumption.

My traditional and cultural diet, relatively uninfluenced by advertising, was later slammed as unhealthy – too much meat, supposedly bad fats, sugar loaded baking, and even our vegetables were

Rather than being shaped by culture, biological needs or family income, children’s choices are increasingly being guided by mascots, cartoon characters, product placement, free toys, free educational resources, sponsorship, philanthropy, and the promise of a fit, non-fat, socially acceptable body.

Those are important and serious issues.

This must stop – our policymakers must introduce controls that prevent children being advertising targets. And it can be done. Brazil, for example, has made it illegal to market any products to children on the basis that it is equivalent to child abuse.

Unless all food advertising was banned – and this should include useless health supplements, diet fads, exercise fads, and products that cause more problems than they are purported to solve like disinfectants – then it’s an uphill and probably futile battle.

We must challenge the assumption that marketing healthy lifestyles and healthy choices is inherently “healthy” and examine how marketing tactics may actually shape children’s thoughts and actions in unhealthy ways.

Yes, but that should be done with research and fact based information.

Further, we must find better ways to make advertising – of both “healthy” and “unhealthy” products – abnormal and help children to become critical consumers, aware of marketing strategies and stealthy tactics such as sponsorship, product placement and “educational”, “health-promoting” programmes.

No suggestions at all of how that could be done. Ban all advertising? Ban all sponsorship? Implement state enforced diets and state controlled media?

Food (and other) marketing is a real issue, but politically tainted rants will more likely detract from rather than contribute to effective solutions.

Food (and other marketing) and sponsorship is a complex issue that creates difficult to resolve problems.

Powell has raised issues, tainted them with political slogans, and has failed to offer realistic alternatives. He means well but seems to be sheltered by an idealistic academic bubble.

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86 Comments

  1. @darrenapowell on Twitter:

    Lecturer – University of Auckland | Health & PE | War on childhood obesity | Corporatization of health, education & children’s bodies and souls | Views my own

    WordPress: The war on fat kids

    Academic, or political activist? Looks like a bit of both.

    Reply
  2. Gezza

     /  4th January 2017

    Fat kids eat too much food of the wrong type. Legislation is obviously needed to enable ruthless prosecution of staff and owners of shops and supermarkets and eateries who are caught selling foods of the wrong type to fat kids. It may sound draconian but I think in the end it’s probably the most effective solution. 🕶

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  4th January 2017

      I can’t see how this could be policed. What about fat adults ? I have a friend who was dangerously overweight-bigger than I have ever been, and I have been fat in my time-should she have been forbidden to buy food of ‘the wrong type’ ? There’s a condition-now thought to be what Henry VIII had in later life-that makes people swell up. What if the person has that ? If the food is legal, I don’t see how it can be policed. You can buy it because you’re thin, you can’t because you’re fat. What if my friend and I had gone in together and bought huge icecreams (I haven’t eaten icecream for years) ? Should the staff have refused to sell her one ?

      Reply
      • Easy Miss Kitty … We already do it to our Youth Unemployed … the Australians apparently do it to many, possibly all welfare dependent Aborigines … Simply restrict what the money card can buy! [and in the Australian case enforce a new ‘Truck System’ of government ‘Company Stores’ with inflated prices run by White folks]

        It’s a form of electronic ‘food policing’ that requires little or no manpower …
        Heck … It could even start out being voluntary …?

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  4th January 2017

          What about people who are working ? Only a very small % of people are unemployed and a tiny % are on ‘money cards’. I have seen one or two people in the supermarket with WINZ vouchers, and these can’t buy alcohol,cigarettes and things like potato crisps-which is fair enough,

          Reply
      • Gezza

         /  4th January 2017

        You’re right of course Kitty. Anyone caught selling the wrong kind of food to any fat people should be prosecuted, the only exemptions being where the fat person in question can produce a medical certficate confirming their fatness is not caused by an excessive of actual fat.

        I think we can generally all distinguish someone who’s got ‘big bones’ from someone whose bones are normal but don’t come anywhere near their epidermis any longer due to a over-fondness for chowing down too much too often. So, no ice cream for the latter. If shop staff run into any difficulty making decisions in this area, they could be given a BMI chart to put up where their cigarette advertsing posters used to go or the trashy magazine ads are currently displayed.

        If that too proves insufficient then we could possibly recruit a number of former fatties as fat police and have them patrol the communities and food courts. I hope these suggestions are helpful. 😳

        Reply
      • Gezza

         /  4th January 2017

        PS: I see no reason why BMI scanners can’t be hooked up to shop securicam systems to instantly identify those persons to whom only reasonable quantities of very lean meat, fish, fresh fruit and vegetables may be sold until the BMI scanner no longer sets off a piercing shriek on their entry.

        Reply
  3. What’s wrong with “neoliberal”? It’s the widely accepted name for the prevailing consensus on political economy [and economised politics] that has ruled our lives for 33 years. As a commentator, if I’m going to talk about the primacy of the ‘private sector’, what brief descriptive term should I use instead of neoliberal?

    Plenty of academics use it. Are they all activists?

    No. This over-reaction at the use of the word smacks of guilt to me. “Globalisation guilt” : ‘The GGs’ : Internal conflict felt by those who have sold their nation’s soul, often expressed as intense defensiveness.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  4th January 2017

      That first paragraph makes a very good point PZ. Railing against the use of the term is now itself becoming somewhat PC.

      Reply
      • Yes Gezza, another thing that’s speeding up exponentially, like population growth, is the time within which the new and radical becomes the orthodox and accepted …

        Reply
    • “It’s the widely accepted name for the prevailing consensus on political economy”

      It’s more like a vague political description often used to denigrate opposing political leanings.

      In the opinion article it does nothing but tainted the arguments.

      Reply
      • “It’s more like a vague political description often used to denigrate opposing political leanings.”

        Really!? Like “socialism”?

        Would you say the same about an argument that vaguely uses “socialism”.
        I think not. You frequently do so yourself …

        “Those who long for a return to seventies socialism … ” [You, yesterday or the day before]

        Neoliberalism is a more accurate descriptive term for prevailing orthodoxy than ‘socialism’ ever was or is for post-1935, pre-Rogernomics Aotearoa New Zealand … and for several reasons … a major one being its intrinsic allusion to Soviet and Chinese “communism” and various other Totalitarian regimes which described themselves as “socialist” …

        Reply
      • Gezza

         /  4th January 2017

        “ne·o·lib·er·al·ism n. A political theory of the late 1900s holding that personal liberty is maximized by limiting government interference in the operation of free markets. ne′o·lib′er·al adj. & n. American Heritage® …”

        There are more complex definitions but this is broadly how most dictionaries seem to generally define it in a nutshell and is what I generally interpret it to mean. If there’s another term that covers that economic philosophy I’d be interested to know.

        While using that phrase to define it as part of the difficulty of stopping overt & pernicious advertising techniques from contributing to poor health outcomes enrages free marketeers & turns some people off because it’s just meaningless jargon to them, I do see neoliberalism as contributing to what is a real problem.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  4th January 2017

          Neoliberalism risks obesity. Socialism risks starvation.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  4th January 2017

            Pissed myself. Very good. Very pithy. 😃

            Reply
            • And VERY incorrect! Neoliberalism risks obesity. Totalitarianism risks starvation. [Both constantly risk ‘war’ when not actively engaged in it]

              The potential of true social democracy or what might perhaps be called ‘market socialism’ remains unknown …

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              I didn’t thay I agreed with it, sometimeth I jutht like getting pithed. 😀

            • Ploint thaken Geeza …

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  4th January 2017

              The true horrors of neoliberalism: workers affluence and socialist despair.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              And fat kids with fat parents.

            • The potential of social democracy or market socialism has, however, at least been tested, right here in Aotearoa New Zealand … 1935 – 84 (with elements creeping in since 1840 … e.g. the ‘spirit’ of Te Tiriti, universal suffrage, old age pensions … all the things we love to be proud of in our heritage)

              While it arose from the excesses of laissez faire capitalism, effectively creating a class war, our peculiar version of social democracy nonetheless achieved extraordinary progress in a short time … universal health, education, housing and welfare systems … due in large part to a substantial portion of the population harbouring an egalitarian ethos …

              Social Security’s flaws, top-heavy bureaucracy, over-control and in some cases restriction of freedom (for the common good), lead to its eventual downfall … Excessively brutal … The baby tossed out with the bathwater … The excesses of laissez faire re-asserted themselves as neoliberal capitalism and began to undo the ‘common good’ work done over 50 years … Where moderate and minor adjustment was all that was necessary we got Rogered and Ruthanased …

              The flaws of this “new orthodoxy” – itself an homogenous and restrictive system – survival of the fittest – now cry out for rectification … Poverty, growing inequality, inequity, iniquity, a new housing crisis … 142,000 people at any one time living in cars, garages or charitable shelters …

              When we finally see that a fine, dynamic balance of these forces, human society and its human marketplace – diverse and heterogenous – perhaps called ‘market social democracy’ – is the way of the future for all our people … then we may avoid the true horrors of neoliberalism … affluence that kills us and our planet, and social despair that kills our society … our ‘right relationships’ …

              Then we’ll have fit kids and fit parents …

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              Soeaking of fit, when Alan & co read that they’ll probably all have a hissy one.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              😡 Soeking = speaking. FiP!

            • Yeah, I know Gezza … but someone’s gotta try and help these people …

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              True. 👍

              (PZ, I’m getting a bit concerned about these ellipses. I’m beginning to wonder if perhaps they are addictive. Who is your supplier?)

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  4th January 2017

              We need help, PZ? From the Government? Like a hole in the head. I get a lot of letters from the Government and none of them are ever good news. Most demand money. Some demand my time. Many list a whole bunch of new things I am not allowed to do.

              Thanks for your offer, but no thanks.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

            • Pete Kane

               /  4th January 2017

              G, I trust Alan’s family authorized this clip. Happy New Year BTW.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              😀 HNY! PK 👍

  4. @ PG – “Should children be educated on complex determinants of health such as genetics, poverty, colonisation and inequality? Should they have Politics 101 at pre-school?”

    Well, if they’re not empowered somehow to evaluate these “complex determinants”, and if large swathes of parents aren’t going to do it for them, should children therefore be subjected to the food advertising?

    That’s the situation we have now, which tends to confirm Darren Powell’s opinion that the ‘want’ of private sector profit over-rides the citizenry’s ‘need’ for health. I don’t find that radical at all. I think it applies to much of what we [loosely] call “health” as well …

    Formally and informally we restrict and withhold lots of things from children until they reach various ages … Powell’s proposing some kind of mutual agreement on the subject … gee, that’s rare …

    Because the primal tenet of neoliberal capitalism is “I want” – powerfully attractive, easily manipulated and continuously satiated short-term by buying and consuming, by sugar, salt, carbon and ‘adventure’ thrills [dopamine] – not “we need” – nothing’s likely to change until there’s some sort of ‘mind-shift’ … likely to be precipitated by some form of crisis …

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dopamine

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  4th January 2017

      Subjected is a very emotive word. Nobody is ‘subjected’ to advertising. It’s the parents who have control of the money, so the ads could be aimed at children exclusively and be pointless if the parents refuse to buy the product. I see very few ads on television, but all the KFC ones that I see seem to show that eating KFC means that people have a great time together. So do pizza ads. Should these ads be banned because it can’t possibly be true that eating X will ensure a good time and togetherness ?

      The last time that I had a McDonalds cheeseburger and chips, which was several years ago when I still ate meat, I remember how very salty they were, I don’t put salt in or on anything. I wonder if this is to make customers thirsty and buy more drinks.

      Reply
      • I think thirst is a happy by-product of food additives and fast food Miss Kitty? As is the rapid return of hunger …?

        Salt and sugar are our primary flavour enhancers, both being psychologically if not physically addictive. Their inclusion to excess in our food ‘buys’ our customer loyalty and keeps us comin’ back for more …

        And its a mighty high price we pay …

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  4th January 2017

          Not me, I haven’t a sweet tooth and loathe salty food-I prefer things to taste of themselves, not be so salty that they could be anything. It may have been that McDonalds being heavy-handed with the salt. I saw someone I know to have dangerously high blood pressure virtually coating his meal in a restaurant with salt. I wouldn’t have been able to get it down if I had, I’d have been up all night with a raging thirst. How anyone could be so stupid-he’s risking his life-or br physically capable of eating so much salt is beyond me.

          Reply
          • It’s called indoctrination and conditioning Miss Kitty … Pavlov’s Dog, “At the Sound of the Bell” … fiercely manipulated by the very advertising … sorry “marketing” … we are discussing here …

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  5th January 2017

              Only for the weakwilled and the gullible. I have just seen a Countdown ad that tells me that I can eat well for less, but I won’t be going to Countdown because I know what their prices are like.

              Anyone who believes that buying a car means that the lifestyle shown by the owners on the ad will come with it must be stupid.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  5th January 2017

              It’s not indoctrination because watching and reading ads is voluntary.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  4th January 2017

          Not me, I loathe salted food and never use salt in or on anything, and don’t have a sweet tooth. I prefer things to taste like what they are, not of salt. I don’t put sugar on anything either and can’t imagine putting it on fruit. I even like unsweetened rhubarb-delicious ! Someone I knew used to have to leave the room when he saw me eating raw rhubarb….

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  4th January 2017

            We reckon rhubarb used to make our old da fart. I dunno whether he might’ve had a similar experience in childhood?

            Reply
  5. Alan Wilkinson

     /  4th January 2017

    Another fatuous Lefty academic practising a fantasy niche badly. If he actually knew anything about his own pretentious speciality he would surely know that health education is merely a segment of the whole education spectrum which requires children to learn to think for themselves and separate truth from fiction.

    An idiot who thinks that can be done by filtering the world’s opportunities from them has no place anywhere near our children.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  4th January 2017

      Education … “requires children to learn to think for themselves and separate truth from fiction.”

      Getting harder to do every day with the internet, the msm’s & social media’s accelaration of the spread of the 5 second attention span.

      Anyway, gotta go find something else to now to try & fool Kitty into thinking I too have a life outside of YNZ. Will log back in & post some sort of quip with another time-stamp later.
      10.32 am.

      Reply
    • Blazer

       /  4th January 2017

      separating truth from fiction is no easy task ,at times..the shameless litany of lies exposed here,an example..https://youtu.be/hIRaYCRF69s

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  4th January 2017

        Of course. That doesn’t absolve us from the duty to ourselves and others, though. Darwin’s law will take care of the rest.

        Reply
    • @ Alan – ” … a segment of the whole education spectrum which requires children to learn to think for themselves and separate truth from fiction.”

      Nice thought. I doubt the reality of education matches this except perhaps for a small percentage of the population. While theoretically being educated to “separate truth from fiction”, children are simultaneously set free in the ‘Lord of the Flies’ playground ‘jungle’ and increasingly overwhelmed with exciting, enthralling fiction, so-called ‘truth’ in-the-eye of the beholder – attenuated or expedient truth – in reality opinion – and incredibly powerful ‘want creating’ manipulation via multiple media …

      IMHO they are mainly being indoctrinated … taught to conform …

      “An idiot who thinks that [such separation] can be done by filtering the world’s opportunities from them has no place anywhere near our children.”

      Allow me to reword: An idiot who thinks separating truth from fiction can be done by providing wide-open, no-strings opportunities, including the right to individually or multiply exploit and harm, without group, communal or social responsibility, has no place near people, let alone children. [Don’t bother citing ‘The Law’. Coke, Sprite, Fanta, L&P et al are legal. Dope isn’t. Go figure?]

      Funny isn’t it, that the only species on Earth capable of resisting, defying and rising above Darwin’s Law instead bows and grovels to it …

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  4th January 2017

        The ban on dope has worked brilliantly hasn’t it, PZ?

        @ Alan – ” … a segment of the whole education spectrum which requires children to learn to think for themselves and separate truth from fiction.”

        Nice thought. I doubt the reality of education matches this except perhaps for a small percentage of the population.

        Then that is a damning indictment on the teaching profession and socialist education. However, I think a larger proportion than you think survive that brainwashing to learn to think for themselves. The rest vote Left.

        Reply
        • Touche! A fine defensive parry … Otherwise useless though vaguely amusing …

          Capitalist, privatised education can only be worse Alan; being simply indoctrination for capitalist, privatised industry, including many which should, by rights, be public utilities. This is hardly likely to “separate truth from fiction” …?

          School as we know it is a principal expression of our industrialised herd instinct.

          Though I risk offence here, I would say few learn to “think for themselves”. Instead they learn to “want with the herd”. And the herd, conditioned by falsely magnified ferocious competition and ‘sport’, duped by such as Darwin and Friedman to believe things like survival of the fittest and winner takes all, are inherently conservative … the herd votes Right …

          The settlers build the redoubt, despite there being no threat from the natives …

          Reply
          • Me – “Funny isn’t it, that the only species on Earth capable of resisting, defying and rising above Darwin’s (theoretical) Law instead bows, kowtows and grovels to it …”

            Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  4th January 2017

            Our local church has got bullet holes to prove there was a threat from the natives.

            Reply
        • @ Alan – “The ban on dope has worked brilliantly hasn’t it, PZ?”

          I suppose its one way for a government to create a massive industry Alan, although its rather a “socialist” if not totalitarian way …

          Sheldon Wolin is SO on the mark … inverted totalitarianism …

          Reply
  6. Kitty Catkin

     /  4th January 2017

    I don’t watch Family Feud unless I see a minute or two before the news, but I have seen how many very large people there are on it. It’s really noticeable.

    Reply
    • The family that bites together, fights together Miss Kitty …?

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  4th January 2017

        Well, it’s not really a feud and everyone is very sporting about losing-all good clean fun, as far as I can see. It’s just a sort of quiz.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  4th January 2017

          I think my loathing of tv quiz programs probably started with Mastermind.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  4th January 2017

            Mastermind isn’t a ‘quiz programme’ as others are. The questions are mostly on someone’s own topic and the general ones are stinkers, or were-they had to make them more difficult than ‘quiz programmes’ like Sale of the Century. It’s not a case of who can answer before anyone else, one has so much time to answer as many as possible and then the next person has their turn. The prizes are deliberately small, as the real prize is the kudos of winning. Or that’s what it was like when I was on it. There’s no comparison between Mastermind and something like Sale of the Century or Wheel of Fortune. Spare me.

            Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  4th January 2017

            Gezza being naughty again I see.

            Reply
        • ‘Family Feud’ harmless good clean fun Miss Kitty? … FFS, its television, how can it possibly be harmless!?

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  5th January 2017

            Don’t watch television if you feel like that-many people don’t bother to. If my set dies, I probably won’t replace it.

            Reply
  7. patupaiarehe

     /  4th January 2017

    Hmmmm….
    Perhaps the real problem here, is that our youth are ‘vulnerable’ to advertising. Well not all of them actually. My kids & I have a laugh at the ads on TV (on the rare occasions we watch TV), because they are aimed at the lowest common denominator. I’ve educated my kids that “Anything you see on an ad break, has been put there by someone who wants you to buy something, or think a certain way”. IMHO the real problem is parents not educating their children to be sceptical of advertising.

    Reply
    • kia ora patupaiarehe e hoa. e pehea ana koe? Happy New Year!

      I’m inclined to agree with you … except that my agreement implies acceptance of the advertising in the first place. That the primary ‘right’ here lies with the advertiser, not the consumer … (Does that make sense?).

      It’s like the old Rogernomics ‘snake oil’ of “a level playing field” – God, I don’t know how many times we were spoon fed that one – as though the field was the first thing, the important premise, the paramount king …. not the players …

      Hence, in the new spirit of professionalism, Railway Workshops’ Under 17 Apprentice First Fifteen got to play The Free Market All Blacks to record a defeat so colossal it would eventually destroy the very enterprise itself …

      I exaggerate for effect … but to agree that there must be industrial machines is to agree that we must therefore serve them …

      The people who make the advertising a probably parents too … those parents are the problem …

      Reply
      • The people who make the advertising ARE probably parents too … those parents are the problem … and those people are the problem if they’re not parents …

        Reply
      • patupaiarehe

         /  4th January 2017

        Katy Pie, E hoa 😉 I blame the parents too…

        Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  4th January 2017

        So secretly you agree with me, PZ. You are coming to your senses then.

        Reply
        • You’ll have to remind me what I’m agreeing with Alan … although the very idea sends chills through me, it seems so unlikely …

          I’m perfectly within my senses already thanks …

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  4th January 2017

            the real problem is parents not educating their children to be sceptical of advertising

            Reply
            • Au contrere Alan … the real problem is parents who make and/or endorse advertising for their own children … (along with possibly not educating them about health, e.g. good health is as personal a thing as self-realisation) …

              The real problem is permitting the advertising to have pride of place.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              (Au contraire, PZ)

      • Gezza

         /  4th January 2017

        The biggest problem is when when you walk into a dairy or supermarket with your kids, or they toddle off alone with their pocket money, into a huge fairyland of shelves & shelves of convenient addictive foods & drinks that are bad for you and which ARE ubiquitous, clever & pernicious advertisements for themselves.

        Reply
        • Conspiratoor

           /  4th January 2017

          If you raise your kids like this, the sight and smell of junk food makes them physically ill

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  4th January 2017

            That really does look very appealing c, but I’m pretty certain it’s not as easy or affordable for as many people as you might think to eat & feed their kids only healthy stuff. And the fast cheap & nasty food industries have cornered the markets everywhere, and target the kids. We all know that.

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  4th January 2017

              It’s not necessary for your kids to eat only healthy stuff, just to eat mostly healthy stuff. I never found that particularly difficult to manage.

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              Regular exercise, and plenty of it, is the other component that’s often missing these days.

          • patupaiarehe

             /  4th January 2017

            Good to see that you peel mushrooms, if you’re gonna eat them uncooked C…

            Reply
          • patupaiarehe

             /  4th January 2017

            You’d get along well with my sister C, she feeds that sort of thing to my nieces every day. Funnily enough though, on the rare occasions when I have to pick them up from school with my kids, they fight the hardest for the lollies in my glove box 😀

            Reply
        • patupaiarehe

           /  4th January 2017

          This is when a parent needs to be be clever G. When my youngest goes to the shop with mum, he whines for a ‘kinder surprise’, and gets one. When he goes to the shop with Dad, & starts whining, I get down to his level & say “Stop whingeing, speak English, and choose a car or chocolate. Keep whingeing, & you’ll get nothing!”.
          Everytime, he says, “I’d like a car please Dad”. And he gets one, if he asks nicely. My ataahua wahine reckons I’m too hard on my kids! Go figure…

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  4th January 2017

            What sort of car are we talking about here?

            Reply
            • patupaiarehe

               /  4th January 2017

              A matchbox one G, he’s only 4!

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              How many has he got?

            • patupaiarehe

               /  4th January 2017

              Plenty G. Lots of sugar free cars, and he loves every one of them, far more than the plastic ones that come inside chocolate eggs..

          • Gezza

             /  4th January 2017

            (Yes, I will be calculating who does the most shopping for food in your whare)

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              I need the actual number patu. I can wait … 🤔

            • patupaiarehe

               /  4th January 2017

              If I took my shoes off, I’d still be struggling! Had a really great ‘random Dad experience’, with ‘Mr 4’ today actually… 🙂

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              Cool. Do tell … 🙂

            • patupaiarehe

               /  4th January 2017

              Well everytime I drive past his daycare centre in the ‘big’ work truck, I blast the airhorn, just in case he is looking. Did it today, thinking he was there, then a few blocks ahead I saw Mum’s car just in front of me at the lights. So I rang her on my mobile, and asked her who was with her. She told me he was ‘on board’, so I told her to stop at the servo up the road, where I was ‘dieselling up’ for tomorrows mission. He has never been in a big truck before, and I could see him looking out the back window a few seconds after I got on the phone to his Mum. When I pulled up at the pump, the little brat was halfway out of Mums car already, with his ‘kiddy seat’ in tow!
              It’s really cool to watch a child enjoying what I do everyday, like it is something new. I can only imagine how it feels for a person his size, to suddenly be ‘sitting on top of the traffic’. Mum reckons he has been bragging to his siblings about it ever since I dropped him back at home… 🙂

            • Gezza

               /  4th January 2017

              Nitey nite patu. 🙂

            • patupaiarehe

               /  4th January 2017

              Ka Kite, E hoa

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