I was reading a story today about a dramatic increase in the different allergies affecting children over the past twenty years. This is especially true with food allergies. I also heard that kids today are more susceptible to things such as bee stings and poison ivy.
I don’t know exactly why, but maybe it could be that kids today spend too much time inside in front of computers, instead of playing outside. They’re also taught in school to wash their hands six-hundred times a day. We all might just be, a little too clean these days, and need to find some mud puddles. I remember as a boy, spending most of my time outside, running, playing in the woods, riding my bike, and getting dirty. I broke an arm, got scrapes and bruises, and even a few stitches, but I never had allergies. I could sprinkle pollen on my cereal, and use poison ivy as napkins, and never sneeze or get a rash. My son got stung by a single bee a few years ago, had a bad reaction, and was rushed to the hospital. When I was twelve, I dislodged a bee’s nest, was chased for at least a mile, and got stung over thirty times. My dad put mud on me to draw out the stingers and sooth the pain, and I was out playing the next day.
So many children these days are also allergic to different foods. The list includes: peanuts, milk, eggs, wheat, soy, various nuts, and fish. Wow, those are the exact ingredients in my mom’s famous, “Guess What” stew on leftover’s night! When I was a kid, me and two-hundred other kids would eat in the cafeteria every day at school, and I never remember even one allergic reaction. In a typical year the lunch ladies would serve hundreds of thousands of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, tens of thousands of gallons of whole milk, and untold tons of some crazy-looking mystery meat, and we all managed to survive. I doubt if you went to a third-world nation, and offered a child a glass of milk, they would say, “No thank you, but I’m lactose intolerant.” The strange thing is, today’s kids are not yet allergic to fast-food, Red Bull energy drinks, video games, Starbuck’s coffee, cell phones, 48-ounce sodas, and piazza.