What’s going on with Michelle Obama‘s Let’s Move campaign to help lower obesity rates among American kids?
The White House’s annual Easter Egg Roll has become a full-tilt Let’s Move “egg-stravaganza.” This year focused on getting kids on their feet, exercising, and learning how to beat obesity.
The theme “Hop into Healthy, Swing into Shape” rallied professional athletes, chefs, and musicians to get out the message. According to Michelle Obama:
The theme really draws from the work I have been doing with the Let’s Move Initiative. We are working to make sure that kids born today—younger than you—grow up healthy, learning how to eat right, and have balance meals, and encourage then to be more physical activity into their lives. We try to make to make each Easter Egg Roll active and fun with obstacle courses, games, and have athletes to motivate kids to be more active, and chefs to demonstrate healthy snacks that folks can prepare, so Hop into Healthy and swing into shape is just clever way to say get healthy and keep moving.
Though the First Lady wants the whole country to slim down, she admitted:
For kids, eating right 70% of the time, then having that special snack is not going to hurt you. And if you are active, you can splurge a little more. I still splurge when I can: that is why I exercise almost every day.
Then came time for confession, followed by a smile:
You want to know what my favorite splurge is? French fries! I had a lot of French fries yesterday! That is the problem with French fries: you can’t just eat one! So, I had a bowl of French fries: it got ugly!
Her remedy to indulging in French fries? Work out on the tennis court. (Hers is at the White House). She also practices yoga to stay flexible.
When asked about the recent decrease in obesity rates among 2-5 year olds, Mrs. Obama commented:
That is a sign of hope, but we can’t get too excited. It could be a blip. But maybe that is the new norm that we have established, having some effect. When we first started Let’s Move, there were a lot of people that argued that obesity wasn’t an epidemic. They asked, why is she taking on that issue? It isn’t that important. But now, it is a forgone conclusion that obesity is an epidemic, and now we are trying to solve it. I think that shows some improvement. Families are having different conversations about what they eat. Kids—like you—are asking different questions. Even if you don’t always do the right thing, you have the tools you need.
See also TIME For Kids: http://www.timeforkids.com/news/meeting-first-lady/158971