Vitamin D, Turning Back the Clock, and Playing

28 10 2009

swingIt was on all the newscasts and in all the newspapers a couple of days ago – The children of this country are suffering from a Vitamin ‘D’ deficiency. Well duh. What in the world did they expect to find with their latest of studies.

It was told back in the 1920’s or maybe even before that the prevalent rickets was caused by a lack of Vitamin D. Then some smart scientist decided that if they put artificial Vitamin D in the milk, the children would just never know the difference. No way. Nothing beats that good old sunshine for a proper amount of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is taken in primarily by the eyes. A child plays out in the sunshine and while he is having the time of his life, he is automatically absorbing that wonderful Vitamin D. His skin is also absorbing the proper amount of Vitamin D. And his bones are getting stronger all the time.

So now, the poor child is inside all the time. In his young life, he is staying indoors in a preschool environment while his mother works. Or he is inside when he is a little older because he is either watching television or playing a game of some kind. And if he dares to get out and go swimming, his mother is dousing him constantly with sun blocker. When is that poor child supposed to get any Vitamin D at all?

Surely someone will wake up in this world and recognize that the ways of the past weren’t all that bad after all. I know I can’t turn the clock back and wouldn’t even if I could. But my children played outside all the time in the pretty weather. They were either building forts out of the hedges in the yard. Or they were riding their bikes and skating on the sidewalk in front of the house. Or they might be playing volley ball or hide and seek in the back yard. What happened to the sidewalks and the yards? Where did they go? Why are our children all forced indoors when they could be having such a super time outside. They might even get to know some of their neighborhood friends. Mine knew everyone within a mile radius.

At that time, we didn’t have to be so paranoid about predators. ┬áNo one was going to murder them or snatch them away. No one wanted our children. The children watched out for one another while they were outside. If anyone had even dared to approach one of the children, the others would have made so much noise that the predator would have been happy to leave well enough alone.

Perhaps we need more stringent punishments for those predators. Perhaps we need to have more mothers at home who would allow their children to play in the safe back yard with their friends. Perhaps we need to turn that clock back maybe just a little bit.