Monday, May 28, 2012

Sick Kids Hospital Fights Childhood Obesity with Pizza, Onion Rings & Cake?

And gelatos, desserts at multiple restaurants, cookies at coffee shops, pub based fish and chips, massive sugary smoothies, and Chinese take out.

It's all part of their "Happy and Healthy Kids" campaign which according to their website, was launched because,
"Current trends are troubling. This is the first generation of children in modern history that may have a shorter lifespan than their parents because of child health issues like obesity."
So how is Sick Kids planning on fighting that?

By raising money.

And how are they going to do that?

By encouraging the ongoing normalization of eating out, supporting the health washing of junk food, and by providing consumers (including children and parents of children) further incentives not to actually cook.


What Sick Kids Foundation is doing - fighting childhood obesity by helping to sell junk food through cause marketing - it's akin to a cancer hospital fighting lung cancer by helping to sell cigarettes.

Except that cancer hospitals don't do that.  They don't because it would be unbelievably hypocritical and would encourage and excuse patently unhealthy behaviour.

They don't because it would be frankly inexcusable.

Bookmark and Share


  1. Why do kids dictate what they will & won't eat nowadays? As if they know what's good for them!

    When I was a kid (quite a long time ago), I had to eat what I was given (the same food as my parents, but in smaller amounts) or go without. There were some show-offs in my class at school, but nobody had ADD/ADHD.

    Nowadays, kids eat crap because they don't like adults' foods. ADD/ADHD has become a nice little earner for drug companies who manufacture legal speed, I mean Ritalin.

    Has the world gone mad, or is it just me?

  2. Love the irony. Thank you for posting.

  3. Julie7:35 am

    There never has been a "War on Obesity". It's always been simply "Whoa, we get to make fun of fat people and pretend it's for their own good" movement. This sort of unbelievable idiocy coming from the Sick Kids Foundation just underscores that.

  4. I work with a childhood obesity prevention initiative in BC and this story is such a blow to all the hard work that people all over this country are doing to try and help keep our kids healthy. I love your analogy with cancer and cigarettes, this IS this exact same thing. And to make it worse, it is coming from a reputable foundation which will likely lead parents to think this is OK because the Sick Kids Foundation is promoting it. When foundations are in a position of influence they need to use their powers for good. Not the promotion of junk food.

  5. Julie Kirkpatrick9:41 am

    Drives me crazy.....just like the french fry truck parked outside the Ottawa Civic Heart Institute!!
    When are we going to get the fact that primary prevention is the ONLY thing that might give our health care system a fighting chance?!! Incredible.

  6. ...And it's not just for children. Several years ago, my dad was in the hospital for heart problems. When it came time to order his meals for the day, there was NOTHING on the entrees menu that met with his doctor's approval for low fat and low sodium.

    I guess it was a business move...keep 'em coming back for more!

  7. Anonymous9:02 am

    nobody is thinking

  8. No different that the Komen foundation sticking their godforsaken pink ribbon on piles of artificially colored/flavored and chemically preserved cupcakes and cookies every October to "raise awareness" of breast cancer (as if there were anyone who is "unaware" of this cute, cuddly, sexy cancer)...or the fast food restaurant outlets present in and around hospitals in both major cities and suburbs (ours has a Dunkin Donuts and a Subway on site) and the awful menu choices for inpatients (some on a diabetic menu are served pancakes with syrup and a cup of juice for breakfast). Healthy people don't generate money for hospitals and pharmaceutical companies, and the head of Komen grosses a half million a year. Cause marketing is the worst.

  9. Yikes. When I was in Sick Kids almost 25 years ago, my parents lived at the Hasty Market. I don't know what they ate, but I don't think it was cupcakes! Times have changed.

    The normalization of eating out -- perfectly said. I'd add that to your list of hills worth dying on. I think going out for a special occasion is fine, but never an excuse to indulge or make bad choices. Ye olde normalizers would call that disordered eating, but it IS possible to eat out and make healthy choices. You just have to know where to look.