Krispy Kreme in Bangkok, McDonalds, KFC, Starbucks and now this ?

A pair of In-N-Out cheeseburgers.

Image via Wikipedia

I remember discussing the globalization of sports in graduate school and we discussed all the major sports that were globalizing their brands; all of the companies like Nike, Adidas and various others that were taking on the world in a major way. I recall sitting in class thinking, “Hey I’m in fitness. What in the world does this have to do with me?”  Well, sometimes as a coach you have to get down on the field before you can see what’s really going on out there. Now that I’m officially global, I can see what’s happening more clearly.

Everyone aspires to be like America, have the latest in American goods and products, but has anyone taken a look at the obesity in America these days? American’s are fatter than ever and it didn’t happen over night. Years and years of consumption, with increasingly larger portion sizes, mixed with an increasingly sedentary lifestyle have led to American’s having high risks of heart disease, diabetes and other health problems.

Unlike the United States, places like Thailand are experiencing rapid growth and the overall wealth and consumption by people is rising fast. This coupled with a rapidly increasing sedentary lifestyle and a lack of health education programs is leading Asian countries like Thailand into an age where kids are growing fatter. With a lack of school sports programs and focus on physical education programs, the children of the next generation are at risk.

Fast food companies and major junk food companies are pumping loads of money into marketing their nutritionally worthless foods to the masses.  They bring their foreign marketing teams and devise their schemes step by step to get their goods in homes. They are heavyweights and they bombard the market, overshadowing the few programs out there attempting to get people on the right track. We are all addicts of sugar, fighting a fight against all of these companies that do nothing more than devise ways to package sugar and sell it to us. If cigarettes are nothing more than nicotine dispensers then fast food restaurants are nothing more than sugar dispensers. From ketchup to buns, sodas to coffees, you will find unreal amounts of sugar.

So how do we combat this growing problem? We need proper education programs. We must figure out ways to teach the children how to eat right, manage their stress better and live a more active and healthy lifestyle. The children need to understand how their body is affected by food and how small changes in their every day consumption can have a lifetime of good benefits. But where does this education start? It starts with us; the adults, the parents, the teachers, the coaches.  We must be the ones to lead by example and change our ways.  It takes a village to raise a child and right now our village is failing globally.

We must build a wall but we cannot build it overnight. A wall is built one brick at a time. So what brick will you lay today so that the world will be better off tomorrow?

By Rich Thurman, B.Sc., MA, CSCS, CPT

Health & Performance Coach

Active Lifestyle Co. Ltd

With a degree in Physiology from UCLA and a Masters Degree in Sports & Fitness Management, Rich combines his knowledge of rehabilitation and sports performance as well as nutritional studies to provide a complete and holistic approach to training clients. The focus is on lifestyle change which creates long term health.


About Rich Thurman III B.Sc, MA, CSCS, NSCA-CPT
Rich has a Bachelors of Science in Physiological Science from UCLA and a Masters of Sports Management from USF. He is certified by the National Strength & Conditioning Association, (NSCA) as a Personal Trainer (CPT) and Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He is primary author of The Fitness Library and writes for various other publications, including the San Francisco Police Officer's Association. Rich is the founder of Xodus Fitness, which offers Fitness Consulting & Personal Training, Urban Body Transformation Bootcamps, Corporate Wellness. Rich also conducts Workshops and an annual lecture at the San Francisco State University Kinesiology Department. Please feel free to contact through any of the links below to inquire about professional services or opportunities.

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