Good nutrition in the early stages of life forms a crucial foundation for every child. It determines future productivity of the child in terms of mental health as well as academic achievements. However, food insecurity has become one of the global challenges to achieving this foundation for every child. According to the data presented by the recent United States Department of Agriculture, over 16 million young populations below the age of 18 years suffer from hunger (Skalicky et al. 178). Though lack of food is dangerous to every human being, it becomes even worse if it occurs in children as it determines their wellbeing in the adult life.
Causes of Child Hunger in the United States
The main cause of hunger, according to the researchers, is poverty. It is difficult to believe that poverty can be a contributing factor to the child hunger in the United States because it is one of the richest nations in the world. However, poverty in the United States can be explained as an internal problem, which is caused by the various factors. These factors include high rate of unemployment, high cost of housing as well as economic downturn. Because of these factors many households lack adequate money to support their families. In addition, due to the increased cost of life, many households in the United States cannot afford nutritious food, which has negative effects on the children’s health (Larry 157). Lack of adequate money has also made some Americans spend their little amount of money on other things such as medicines, which results in malnourished children. It has also been found that most of the poor households in the United States have become hopeless, which has made them turn to drug abuse. Therefore, they do not have money to buy food.
Effects of Child Hunger in the United States
Lack of adequate food has various effects on children. Research has shown that those children who are suffering from hunger are likely to have a poor health in their adulthood. It usually happens because during the early growth stages the child’s immune system is developing. Therefore, lack of adequate food means that the child’s immune system will be compromised and subsequently the child is likely to have a poor health.
Child hunger also results in low academic performance. Those children who lack adequate food do not have proper concentration at school. In addition, these children cannot retain what they have been taught. Children experiencing hunger are also likely to persistently miss classes. Further, they may be even expelled from school. Therefore, children suffering from hunger do not reach good results at school, which may affect their success in the future life.
Solutions to Child Hunger in the United States
The main solution to the child hunger in the United States is restoration of economic growth and wage increase. More workplaces should be created and for the poor Americans. It is also essential to strengthen the child nutrition programs, which will provide food for those children who cannot access adequate food at home. The Federal government should also fight with the child hunger. Namely it should ensure that all the families in the United States have access to the healthy food.
It is a paradox that there are children who suffer from hunger in the United States, which is considered to be one of the richest and the most prosperous nations in the world. Children form a particularly significant segment of every population, and they should not be allowed to suffer from hunger as it will have negative effects on their future life. It is, therefore, important for the government and everyone concerned to come up with a long lasting solution to this problem.