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Are Happy Meals really a problem? Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver doesn’t think so...

By Michelle Edelbaum, August 10, 2010 - 4:42pm

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Michelle asks: Do you think Happy Meals are a problem? Share your opinion in the comments section below.

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My 4 year old son gets a meal from Burger King (because it's closer) about once every 6 weeks but he always picks the apples instead of the french fries (yes, HE picks) and the apple juice or milk -- even when whoever is buying (typically daddy) offers a mini milk shake. I do wish that they would offer a small grilled chicken sandwich in the meal because he would absolutely love that ... but as an occasional treat I don't have a problem with what he gets!

Anonymous

08/10/2010 - 5:59pm

I agree with where he is coming from. If we stop worrying about specific foods and instead focus our energies on changing our attitudes, at some point McDonald's and any other company will not be successful at using toys to target consumers. People will realize that what McDonald's is selling isn't really food.

Anonymous

08/10/2010 - 6:14pm

We get the kids Happy Meals once a month (as a treat). Do they nag me for one more often than that? Of course! But guess what? I am the parent. I am the one who decides whether or not to have a H.M., not my kids. Kids are constantly being targeted in marketing campaign (cereals, snacks, toys, clothes, etc.). It's our job as parents to make the right choices for our kids in hopes that they will be able to make the right choices once they are on their own.

yproni

08/10/2010 - 10:28pm

I don't think happy meals are a problem. I think the real problem is that parent's don't know how to say "No" when their kids want something. My parent's raised me with healthly eating habits and taught me to eat balanced meals, and that junk food is a special treat. Everything in moderation. I went to Burger King maybe a couple of times a year as a treat, and the food wasn't even what I looked foward to-it was the play gym. My daughter is 3 and I am raising her in a house without junk food, her treats at home are yogurt, applesauce and fresh fruit. If we want junk as a treat we would go out for it, and it would be once in a great while, especially since she is only 3. Of course kids see the toys and want the meals- kids want a lot of things, it doesn't mean that parents should give them whatever they want. I think that's the main issue here-overindulging our children.

Anonymous

08/10/2010 - 10:29pm

I agree with Jamie Oliver. We should teach our children to view Happy Meals and other junk food as a treat. Parents need to step up to the plate and be parents, not expect McDonald's and other big corporations to parent for us. If we start to treat food like Happy Meals as occasional treats, then the food that is out there for the consumer will change to meet our demands. Besides, where do you draw the line? Next thing you know, someone will be suing grocery stores for having candy bars next to the check out, or 7-eleven for selling slushies, or dairies for making ice cream. It's all about making healthy choices, not food censorship.

Anonymous

08/11/2010 - 12:00pm

I don't think Happy Meals are the problem. I think parents should take the responsibility for the types of food their children eat. Kids arent driving themselves to Mc Donalds. They aren't the ones pulling the money out of their wallets to pay for the meals. Parents need to make the responsible decision to feed their children healthy foods. I do agree that a happy meal can be a nice treat every once in a while. But that's all it should be, not a daily staple of a childs diet. It is up to the parents to make good choices for their children. In turn, children will learn, by example, to make good decision for themselves.

Anonymous

08/12/2010 - 12:38pm

I don't think Happy Meals are the problem. I think parents should take the responsibility for the types of food their children eat. Kids arent driving themselves to Mc Donalds. They aren't the ones pulling the money out of their wallets to pay for the meals. Parents need to make the responsible decision to feed their children healthy foods. I do agree that a happy meal can be a nice treat every once in a while. But that's all it should be, not a daily staple of a childs diet. It is up to the parents to make good choices for their children. In turn, children will learn, by example, to make good decision for themselves.

Anonymous

08/12/2010 - 12:52pm

I do not think Happy Meals are a problem. As an adult, I enjoy one myself. With the choice of apple dippers instead of french fries, plus the choice of milk, why not? Linda

Anonymous

08/13/2010 - 9:08am

No, Happy Meals are not the problem. Jamie Oliver is right on! The problem is we as adults take the short cuts too often. If we take our health, our well-being, seriously then we will put more effort into eating healthy as a way of life. If we are doing that, we will be more inspired and motivated to teach our kids how to do the same.

Anonymous

08/15/2010 - 2:39pm

My kids do not even like the toys they just love the fries-we try not to drive in that direction just to avoid the nagging form the back seat-every once in a while is fine but if we drive past there on our way to school or the store then its "fries? just fries? oh and I need the chocolate milk with my fries"one bag of small french fries spoiles the dinner or the lunch we planned to have-so if we plan to have that for a treat then we go that way-if not we just drive around it- :)
I personally love the nuggets :O)

Anonymous

08/16/2010 - 3:08pm

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