(NaturalNews) The obesity epidemic in America is now so out of control that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has decided it would be a good idea to start giving statin drugs to children as young as eight years old, according to their latest published policy outlined in a clinical report entitled "Lipid Screening and Cardiovascular Health in Childhood." The report is authored by Stephen R. Daniels, MD, PhD, Frank R. Greer, MD and the AAP Committee on Nutrition. Not surprisingly, an article by Lindsey Tanner of The Associated Press points out that Daniels has worked as a consultant to Abbott Laboratories and Merck (on matters unrelated to their cholesterol drugs). One can only imagine the new visions of dollar signs that the pharmaceutical companies must have dancing in their heads.
Cholesterol Screening for Two-Year-Olds?
A visit to the pediatrician may soon include screening children and adolescents with a fasting lipid profile. The AAP now recommends cholesterol screening for all children who are overweight or obese. Children who have parents or grandparents that developed heart disease at an early age or have other risk factors are also candidates for screening. The AAP is recommending that children be screened as early as age two. Imagine that. If Gramps had a heart attack at a young age, Junior may have to get a blood workup before he even starts preschool. According to the AAP Committee on Nutrition, if Junior is 8 years or older "with an LDL concentration of 190 mg/dL (or 160 mg/dL with a family history of early heart disease or 2 additional risk factors present or 130 mg/dL if diabetes mellitus is present), pharmacologic intervention should be considered."
AAP Ignores rBGH Issue
Interestingly enough, the AAP recommends that children drink low-fat milk but makes absolutely no mention whatsoever of avoiding red meat and milk that comes from cows injected with the bovine growth hormone (rBGH). The Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility recommends that people not consume products from cows that have been injected with any kind of bovine growth hormone, citing that it increases disease rates in cows and has been linked to possible increases in cancer and antibiotic resistance in humans. Moreover, Fairview Industries, a biochemistry research firm in Wisconsin, contends that use of rBGH produces milk which contains cow blood serum protein in it, and in certain children, this protein has been found to promote diabetes.
The use of the bovine growth hormone has been banned in Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and in the 27 countries of the European Union. Why is it that the U.S. generally seems to lag behind other countries when it comes to such important safety issues? In fact, some informed consumers may wonder if it is even advisable to give children cow's milk at all, considering that there are many other dietary sources of calcium. For example, just 2 teaspoons of basil contains only 7.5 calories and has 63.4 mg of calcium, according to the nutritional profile at WHFoods.org.
Doctors and Drug Chemists Question Safety of Statins
According to Tanner's article, Daniels believes that cholesterol drugs are "generally safe" for children. Now, there's a shocker, because there are many doctors who don't even think they are safe for adults. Shane Ellison, a former pharmaceutical chemist, doesn't have anything nice to say about statins, either, in a report called "Life Saving Cholesterol Facts" published at NewsWithViews.com.
A Peek Inside of Grocery Carts
While the AAP Committee on Nutrition does advise nutritional counseling and increased physical activity for certain groups of patients, they seem to ignore the undeniable fact that little children don't get high cholesterol because they have a statin drug deficiency. Usually one look inside of the family's grocery cart can give a pretty good indication of which children will have problems with cholesterol. Parents who think pepperoni pizza is the perfect food because it has something from each of the four food groups (there really are people who believe this) or that organic, cream-filled cookies are a health food will probably have children recommended for cholesterol screening. If the only thing resembling fruit in the shopping cart is the filling inside of a toaster tart, the kids eating this junk are going to be at risk.
Lipid Profiles for Tots not the Answer
Parents wishing to learn more about nutrition should definitely view the documentary called All Jacked Up. In a review of the movie, Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, states: "It's focused almost entirely on showing you what's wrong with the 'Standard American Diet' and the real cost of that diet in terms of disease, emotional distress and broken lives. It's up to you, the viewer, to decide what kind of diet you want to pursue after watching the movie, but make no mistake: You will automatically choose a healthier diet after watching this film! You can't help it. All Jacked Up speaks to your brain in a way that instantly changes your behavior." It's too bad many doctors seem more focused on medication than on prevention. If they were, they'd be recommending that expectant mothers view this film rather than cholesterol screening for two-year-olds.
About the author
Joanne Waldron is a computer scientist with a passion for writing and sharing health-related news and information with others. She hosts the Naked Wellness: The Gentle Health Revolution forum, which is devoted to achieving radiant health, well-being, and longevity.