Culture

Here’s Why Activists And Parents Are Upset About A Weight Loss App For Children

This week, WW, the ridiculously rebranded name for weight loss company Weight Watchers, proved that despite its new designation, the global brand is offering more of the same problematic trash to the world — this time, directed at children in particular.

On Tuesday, WW launched Kurbo, a nutrition and weight loss app for kids between the ages of 8 and 17 years old.

Not surprisingly health experts are furious about the danger it could pose to the physical and mental health of our young people.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B1HrLEtA2Dc/

“You NEED to Shut. This. Down,” Whitney Fisch, a social worker, school counselor and mom of three, wrote Wednesday on Facebook. “All bodies, especially growing + developing bodies, deserve respect + the ability to grow into whatever shape they’re meant to grow to be.”

The company describes the app, which is free, as a “scientifically-proven behavior change program designed to help kids and teens age 8-17 reach a healthier weight” that was acquired from Stanford University’s Pediatric Weight Control Program. It uses a traffic light system to instruct youth on foods that they should eat and those that they should avoid. Kids are urged to eat plenty of “green light” foods, including fruits and vegetables, to be “mindful” of their portions of “yellow light” foods, like lean protein, whole grains and dairy, and to lessen their intake of “red light” foods, such as sugary drinks and “treats.” The app also encourages users to track their daily physical activity and deep breathing.

With a paid, subscription-based plan, children can also receive through the app one-on-one sessions with coaches that are supposed to be experts in nutrition, exercise, and mental health. However, the Huffington Post reports that these coaches do not need to have any credentials in health or nutrition fields; though they do go through a minimum of six to eight hours of initial training.

Eating disorder treatment experts are concerned about the impact an app like Kurbo could have on a young person’s mental health, self-esteem and eating habits.

https://www.instagram.com/p/ByQhLpeAJzD/

“While the intention of the app is to promote health and wellness, there is the risk that it could do more harm than good,” Kathryn Argento, a registered dietician with The Renfrew Center, a national network of eating disorder treatment centers for women and girls, told the Huffington Post. “Targeting kids as young as 8 years old to focus on … their bodies can lead to an intense preoccupation with food, size, shape and weight.”

Aside from the damaging impact apps like this one can have on a children’s relationship with their bodies and food, public health organizations and pediatricians also doubt the efficacy of children’s weight loss programs altogether.

“The evidence suggests that these types of tools may be helpful adjuncts to weight management, but there are few studies in pediatrics to confirm that they lead to a ‘meaningful change in their weight trajectories,’” Dr. Ihuoma Eneli, director of the Center for Healthy Weight and Nutrition at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, told the news outlet.

As part of WW’s rebranding, the company and app have chosen to start focusing on overall health and wellness in addition to weight loss.

According to Gary Foster, chief scientific officer at WW, Kurbo “isn’t a weight loss app.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/B1FjjUQAmll/

“This is an app that teaches in a game-ified, fun, engaging way what are the basics of a healthy eating pattern,” he told the Huffington Post.

But parents still worry the app could be spreading an all-too-familiar message that they are unworthy as they are and must change their physical appearance to be accepted. While young people already receive these memos from a diet-obsessed mass media, parents fear that unrealistic beauty ideals are now being pushed on impressionable children in the name of health and wellness.

In response to these apprehensions, Foster said: “I think there could be some misperception that somehow we’re saying, ‘All kids should lose weight, you’re not OK as you are.’ What we’re saying to kids who are trying to achieve a healthier weight — kids and families — is that this is a reasonable, sensible way to do it.”

But despite this alleged kid-friendly wellness mission, Kurbo’s website sends another message.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B03-BhhA4V5/

Its landing page shows young people’s “success stories,” and they’re celebrating weight loss, not how often they meditate or how many ounces of water they drink daily.

“There’s no way that these kids don’t realize that the app is supposed to help them lose weight,” Ginny Jones, an eating disorder recovery activist, said. “No matter how hard it tries to market itself as a wellness company, WW is about weight loss. Kids are way smarter than we think they are, and every ‘big kid’ who [has been] put on a weight loss program knew exactly what their parents were trying to do.”

Read: She Shared Stories Of Being Fat-Shamed At The Doctor And Fear Of Wearing A Two-Piece Then, Jessica Torres Accidentally Built One Of The Biggest Body Positive Communities

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

These 9 Arroz Con Frijoles Recipes From Latin America Will Change Your Nightly Dinner

Culture

These 9 Arroz Con Frijoles Recipes From Latin America Will Change Your Nightly Dinner

whitewish / Getty Images

One of the most iconic dishes from Latin America is arroz con frijoles. The mix of rice and beans is a smell and taste that sends every Latino back to their childhood. Mami and abuela always know how to make beans better than we ever can. However, practice makes perfect. Just try these recipes until you finally land on the flavor and texture you remember from childhood.

1. Casamiento Salvadoreño

View this post on Instagram

#casamientosalvadoreño

A post shared by Carina (@tachu_b) on

Casamiento Salvadoreño is a beautiful marriage of rice, red beans, peppers, and onion. The four different components get added at different times slowly building up until you hit the perfect balance in the flavor and consistency. If you like a savory breakfast, pair it up with some eggs and maduros and enjoy a Salvadoran breakfast.

2. Arroz Congri

Arroz Congri is one of the most quintessential dishes of Cuban cuisine. The mix of the rice and black beans is something you can find in any Cuban home or restaurant. The dish relies on the rice, bell peppers, and beans cooking together with spices until the water is absorbed. The method of cooking is how you can plate it in the iconic thick disc shape that we all know and love.

3. Arroz Com Feijão Preto

View this post on Instagram

Sometimes, I cook at home in my kitchen. Here is a comforting and ridicously delicious Brazilian Black Bean recipe These black bean beauties are cooked with onions, garlic, and seasoned perfectly with coriander, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper, next garnish with a lime wedge and sprig of cilantro to brighten it all up. They make a great side dish to enchiladas and more. Ingredients: 2 cans Black Beans, drained and rinsed 1/2 Tbls cooking oil 2/3 cups diced, white onion 2-3 garlic cloves, finely minced (I use a microplane zester) 2/3 cups chicken stock or broth 1/4 tspn cumin 1/4 tspn coriander 1/4 tspn mexican oregano salt &pepper to taste 1 lime and sprig of cilantro for garnish Instructions: In a small bowl mix together the cumin, coriander, and mexican oregano and set aside. In a saucepan on the stove, heat the olive oil to med-high heat. Saute onions for about 3 minutes or until they just start to become translucent. Add garlic and saute abut 30 seconds more. Add beans and broth, and seasonings then bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer and simmer for about 7-9 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper to taste. When they are done cooking, remove from heat and add in a few squeezes of fresh lime juice. Then use the back of a spoon or rubber spatula to lightly mash some of the beans. You don’t want to pulverize all of the beans. The beans will thicken more upon resting. You can add more broth/stock if, they get to thick. Recipe adapted by Our Best Bites I've been making this recipe since 2009. It is my absolute favorite black bean recipe. @utahanaskitchen @ourbestbites #blackbeans #brazilianblackbeans #sidedish #semihomemade #cooking #homecooking

A post shared by Utah's Food Flirt | Laura (@utahsfoodflirt) on

Arroz com Feijão Preto is Brazil’s answer to the regional love of rice and beans. What really sets these beans apart is the use of bacon to add some flavor and substance to the dish. Of course, there are still some veggies included but the true magic of this Brazilian dish comes from the smoky and salty bacon flavor.

4. Tacu-Tacu

Peru is known to be one of the best food destinations in the world. Tacu-Tacu is just another example of Peru’s superior food status in the world. The most unique, and fun, thing about this arroz con frijoles dish is the shape. To achieve the texture for this you have to remember to let the rice sit in the bean mixture for 15 minutes so that the rice absorbs enough liquid to be malleable.

5. Gallopinto

Gallopinto is another version of arroz con frijoles that requires properly layering and add the ingredients. The rice does cook for a brief moment with the onion until it is coated with the hot oil before adding the water. After the rice is done you add the beans and let the delicious dish cook to perfection.

6. Arroz Con Habichuelas

Olives go a long way it making this Dominican dish really stand out. Arroz con habichuelas is a classic Dominican dish that brings together chicken bouillon, olives, rice, and beans together to create something you won’t forget.

7. Arroz Con Queso

Okay, so this isn’t an arroz con frijoles recipe. However, who doesn’t like trying new things. Arroz con queso is a famous Bolivian dish and it is always worth trying something new. Cheese is one of the greatest and most important food groups, tbh so rice with cheese is just…. *chef’s kiss.*

8. Arroz Con Gandules

View this post on Instagram

Order today #Thursday #ArrozConGandules

A post shared by La Empanada Mama (@la_empanada_mama) on

Another rice dish that doesn’t use beans but is still just as delicious. Arroz con gandules is a Puerto Rican dish with pigeon peas that every rice loves needs to try at least once. Just one bite will transport you directly to the Caribbean island and will make you scream “WEPA!”

9. Arroz Con Frijoles Refritos

View this post on Instagram

These Vegetarian Enchiladas @lasmargaritasbc were AMAZING. You can definitely get one of the protein enchiladas (they have a variety) but I really wanted to try this one. It's Two corn tortillas rolled with cheese, green onions, olives, green peppers, tomatoes. Covered with a mild red enchilada sauce, melted cheese and topped with sour cream. Served with refried beans and mexican rice ($14.95). You honestly, don't even miss the meat! You also get complimentary chips and salsa. I love mexican rice and beans and this definitely hit the spot. Would 10/10 recommend. – – – – – #foodgram#instaeat#eatinvancouver#foodie#foodadventures#instafood#instalike#instafollow#followforfollow#foodgram#foodie#foodphotography#foodcoma#eeeeeats#instafoodie#girllikestoeat#604foodie#enchiladas#vegetarian#mexicanfood#mexicanriceandbeans#vegetarianrecipes#healthyfood

A post shared by Amneet Mithie (@girllikestoeat_) on

It’s all about the beans here. They have to be cooked more than once and in more than one way. After all, they are called refried beans so they aren’t just cooked once and done. These are a classic around the world and you have definitely had them whenever you went to a Mexican restaurant.

READ: This Iconic Mexican Food Won The Twitter Battle To Be Named Latin America’s Best Street Food

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

People Are Talking About What They Would Look Up On Their Phone 5 Years In The Future

Things That Matter

People Are Talking About What They Would Look Up On Their Phone 5 Years In The Future

Hasn’t everyone had a desire to see the future at some point in their life? During so much uncertainty at the moment, it’s no wonder that people are wishing they had a chance to type in a question to the future and see what it holds. Recently, a user on Reddit posted a prompt about the future that instantly went viral.

Writing to fellow Redditers the users asked “You can’t time travel, but your phone has the internet from 5 years in the future. What do you search for first?”

Check out the pretty wise and honest answers below!

“I’d try to be like Bill Murrays character by the end of Ground Hog day. Find out if there’s any needless deaths from preventable accidents that I may be able to change. Obviously I’d have won the lotto too, this would give me plenty of resources and free time to become a local superhero.”- Meglamore

“I would start a blog on my pc and then switch to my phone to check if it now has updates from the future. If so, my future self could talk to my present self. I could read about my mistakes and try to avoid them. If a post disappears, that would mean that I did it right.”- thezubek

“My son to make sure he’s still alive. He’s chronically suicidal and should be on his own by then. I worry about it.”- Gadgetownsme

“Queen elizabeth (if there were more searches available). Then probably see which countries still exist as they are now, See how covid-19 played out. Memes so I can make an accurate “this is a meme from the future” Then see what are the biggest breakthroughs of science in the last 5 years, probably at least medicine and energy. Also obviously lottery numbers or something.”- uhrilahja

“I would check my mails and message Apps to find out how I’m doing in the future. If the phone continuously updates, so that it always show the internet of in five years. Then I would probably look for scientific breakthroughs like fusion and also for catastrophes. Then I would start writing messages to myself like a diary so I can see them in the present. And also in 2025 I would start copying the messages from then in 5 years and send them to myself so I can see the messages of the next ~100 years assuming I live that long. Edit: I probably would write a script that copies the messages for me.” – Barti666

“Check if im still single.” –Beans_In_The_Dark

“My family member’s names, i Want to know who to call and go see every chance i get if they don’t have that much time left.” – EothainVSorcs

“Wars or terrorist attacks that have happened so that we can avoid them or prepare for stuff like pandemic and natural disasters early.”- themattv140

“Whether or not Donald Trump (or one of his allies) is President.”- Pepperspray24

“Besides the obvious (lottery, election, myself, etc) I would want to see if opera made a comeback after the pandemic or if the virus was the final nail in the coffin of this art form, which has been slowly headed towards its demise for decades now.

Edit: I should have said here that I’m a huge opera fan and I hope I’m wrong!

And I’m not talking about the web browser.” –IoSonCalaf

“Using this logic, I’d want to try to fight climate change. We’re approaching the point of no return, and unless we figure out how to change things quickly, we’re fucked. I’d use the first five years to learn the issue. Then, I’d right a big note to self online on what I studied, what was important, what wasn’t. I’d include things to avoid, things to try going for, a point of no return that scientists concluded, and that they should constantly update in case I get involved in an accident. This would lead to a long chain of studying, trying to find solutions, and ways to get involved into politics in order to actually have a chance of making anything change. The saddest part is, it might not even be possible, and so there would be an unlimited amount of me’s trying to prevent imminent doom, only to fail over and over and over again.”- Chicken_0n_Fire

“Trump conviction.”- micialicia

“I’d look up how my own writing has gone, because five years from now I would definitely have gotten past some of the things I was stuck on. I would save myself some time by just copying my finished story and posting it now. I could get a different perspective on my finished work, see all my new ideas. This could go many ways because I could be hella confused on how I got a certain headcanon about a character and just general confusion on a lot of stuff, and some of the journey of writing is the journey of figuring it all out, and I might not fully understand it all just reading my finished story and not having gone through the process of writing it, like not being able to get into my future self’s head to really understand it the way my future self does, but it could be really nice to save myself five years of time.

I’d look up reviews for future games, movies, and show to see if they are as good as the trailers suggest, and prevent myself from wasting time on unenjoyable content.

Basically after looking up all the general world-altering stuff, I’d surf the internet like I normally do, but this time I won’t have to wait for all the new content.

I would also see which celebrities have been accused and/or convicted of crimes; see who I should really support and who’s going to stay a good person and who’s going to be revealed as corrupted.

I’d see how the elections turn out and if things are better or worse with the new president, try to prepare for said problems, and depending on if I can convince other people to believe that I really have a future phone, maybe I could try and change who gets voted for if it turns out to be worse.

I’d look up recent science discoveries, see what has been revealed as myth and new health concerns. I’d see how bad global warming has got and if we’ve finally managed to start really doing something about it.

See all this stuff with Black Lives Matter and corporate greed and all the political stuff and how it all turned out and how we got there, and see if I was wrong and if I need to change my opinions on things and try to lead us down a different path if it ends badly.

Basically see how things turn out and if I should change my opinions on things.”- Ice_the_Irken

“Interesting to see how many people pick COVID as what they would search. I would search global warming-linked disasters to make sure I wasn’t living anywhere where they’d happen. And 2020 election results to see whether or not I need to move forward with moving to Canada.” –jabberingginger

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com