Today I am blessed with media coverage from Fox News Online-Health section, http://www.foxnews.com/health/2013/07/14/milk-and-cookie-disease-new-childhood-health-condition-caused-by-diet/. A freelance writer summarized my philosophy, observations, and key points from my book “A Healthier Wei” in this succinct piece. As I read the article for the first time, I also read the comments posted form the public and the reactions from her piece. Let me be clear, I am not and never have mandated anyone, readers and parents, what to eat, I have always shared simply my observations and experience working with families who has a child in their lives that suffers from chronic symptoms that even using many medications did not help. Here are some comments from the posting by Fox News this morning:
“Here we go again… another control freak who can’t stand the idea that somewhere, someone is eating something she doesn’t like.” To this person who obviously does not know me nor know my book, my message, nor my philosophy, if they did go to the website or read the book, would know that I am not a control freak and clearly I have blogged that my family enjoys dairy and sugar in what I consider moderation. Thank goodness for my career and day job caring for patients and their families, such that I simply do not have time to worry about someone somewhere eating something I don’t’ like…
Calling it a disease, wow. Why doesn’t she call it “Eat what I want you to eat disease”?Again, highly encourage reader to go to www.ahealtheirwei.com and find out more. There is no prescription diet for what I want anyone to eat, but I always encourage families to work on eating healthier and teaching their children to make healthier choices.
I’m sorry, but a significant part of parenting is making sure our kids’ eating is healthy and balanced. If other things are interfering with that, we need to make changes. Maybe it should be called “distracted parent disease”. I could not agree more, yes, all of us as parents and caretakers need to actually pay attention, make and take the time, to focus more on what our children are consuming.
Yeh, Ok….Another “disease”…..more bad choices joining the ranks of diseases. Yup, agree, I am not the first health care professional to bring up the fact that for adults and children, bad choices for what we eat and drink leads to diseases.
I hope everyone gets the opportunity to watch “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead”. In this documentary by Joe Cross, the inspired truck driver who committed himself to a regimen of juicing, reclaimed his own health and then inspired an entire town to get healthy, there is an example that is very relevant to the reactions to this interview as shown by the above comments. This driver’s brother was interviewed early on in the movie that while he supports his brother’s decision to lose weight and get healthy, no one was going to tell him what to eat and he is free to make his own choices and live as he pleases. Towards the end of the movie, the brother suffers a heart attack and fortunately did not die, and then shares with his brother that he is ready and wants to make a change because he wants to live and the heart attack experience has given him new perspective. I know that here in America, there are numerous examples of issues that create heated political debate and strong reactions when certain populations perceive any attempt at infringement of their personal freedom and rights. Please, everyone has the right to not eat healthy, to not be healthy, to increase their chance of diseases as a result of poor choices, and yes, it is my job and others in the health professions to care for you without any prejudice to get you as well as we can so that you may enjoy your life and family and hopefully endure and prevail against any acute or chronic illnesses. When it comes to children however, they deserve the right to grow and live in an environment where healthy eating and awareness of consequences of poor diet and dietary habit choices is possible, and such is most likely most possible and effective through conversations and partnership between health care professionals and the parents/caretakers.
To all those out there who do not have a child in their life that may suffer from the “Milk and Cookie Disease”, please ignore me and what I have to say is of no relevance to you. It does not bother me. It is to all those who love a child that may have been suffering and are looking for alternative answers from medication and surgery, my efforts and commitment are for you and your child. I coined the term the “Milk and Cookie Disease” only because it was “catchy” and reflected the excessive dairy and sugar in our current American diet today. How was I to know that it may inflame some as if restricting dairy and sugar is similar to prohibition and banning firearms? Oh well…. I will continue to “Do the right thing’ and always advocate for children’s health through better diet and dietary habits.
Dr. Julie Wei is a pediatric ear, nose, and throat specialist and the author of A Healthier Wei. As a mother herself, Dr. Wei is a passionate advocate for improving children's health through better diet and dietary habits. She has been committed to helping parents learn how to eliminate their child's ear, nose, and throat problems simply by reducing excessive sugar and dairy intake, as well as minimizing habitual late night snacking. She hopes to raise awareness for the need for accountability by both medical professionals and parents to ensure that children are not prescribed or take unnecessary medications long term.
When she is not in the clinic, operating room, or conducting research, you will find her in the kitchen preparing food with love along with her daughter Claire. If you sit next to her on the plane, she will likely share with you information about how to minimize choking hazards in young children, and many other tips for improving your child's health.