SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Nation/World

September 7, 2013

First lady: Anti-obesity effort is changing habits

WASHINGTON — Michelle Obama said yesterday that her anti-childhood obesity campaign is creating a “cultural shift” in how Americans live and eat, and is beginning to have a positive influence on children’s health.

As an example, she cited something she said she couldn’t imagine when the “Let’s Move” program was launched nearly four years ago: television commercials pitching fast-food breakfast sandwiches made with healthier egg whites instead of whole eggs.

But the first lady said more work is needed to solve the childhood obesity problem.

“Make no mistake about it, we are changing the conversation in this country,” Mrs. Obama said at a back-to-school event at a District of Columbia elementary school. “We are creating a cultural shift in how we live and eat and our efforts are beginning to have a real impact on our children’s lives.

“But I also want to be very clear. While we’re finally beginning to make some progress, we still have a very long way to go before we solve this problem,” she said.

In remarks to teachers, parents and others, Mrs. Obama cited documented declines in childhood obesity rates in New York City, Philadelphia, California and Mississippi. She highlighted changes to kids’ menus by national restaurant chains and new labels at Wal-Mart stores that promote foods with less sugar, salt and fat.

Cities are building grocery stores in underserved neighborhoods and refurbishing playgrounds and bike paths for kids, Mrs. Obama said, and schools are planting vegetable gardens, installing salad bars and replacing food fryers with steamers.

But she urged audience members not to be complacent.

“Right now, we’re truly at a pivotal moment, a tipping point when the message is just starting to break through,” the first lady said. “And if we keep pushing forward we have the potential to transform the health of an entire generation of young people.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World

Local News
  • Salem's Collins seeks longer day

    SALEM -- Collins Middle School may look a little different next year. For starters, longtime Principal Mary Manning, who has headed the school for more than 20 years, is retiring and will be replaced by a new, yet-unnamed principal. More than that, t

    April 19, 2014 6 Stories

  • 140418_SN_KYU_WALK_2 Walking the Walk BEVERLY -- Four hundred thirty walkers, 10.5 miles and $65,000. Those are the numbers you can count on just about every year from the Good Friday Walk. The 35th annual walk produced those figures once again yesterday, with the money going to help nee

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Marblehead chief charts drop in crime MARBLEHEAD -- Police chief Robert Picariello has highlighted an overall drop in crime from 2012 to 2013 in his annual report to the town. The decrease was substantial in the category of crimes against persons, down 23 percent for incidents like rape,

    April 19, 2014

  • North Shore residents to run in 2014 Boston Marathon

    The Salem News asked those on the North Shore who are running this year's Boston Marathon to share their reasons for running. 

    If you're running the marathon this year, it's not too late to share why you're running. Send a brief paragraph, a photo of yourself and a link to your fundraising site (if applicable) to Cheryl Richardson at crichardson@salemnews.com.

    April 17, 2014

  • One-way school bus passes to get trial run in Peabody PEABODY -- Students will be able to ride the school bus one way next year without paying the price of a round-trip fare. The School Committee has agreed to offer one-way passes on a trial basis following review of transportation data and a proposal f

    April 19, 2014