Monday, March 22, 2010

What to do - 1 of 5 - Comment @

This week, through March 26th, we all have an unprecedented opportunity to shape the future of Federal efforts on children and weight. An inter-agency Task Force on Childhood Obesity is seeking your comments. (My first comment was change the name to something like Task Force on Healthy Futures for Children.)

The process is very easy: Go to and fill in the blanks. The comment box has room for 2000 characters and you can also upload documents. You can submit multiple comments.

If you want to know more about the Task Force and their specific questions, read the Federal register at

Speak from your heart - from your personal experience and your professional expertise. Tell them about your work and positive programs that you support. The Task Force's work is built on four pillars:

  1. Ensuring access to healthy, affordable food;
  2. Increasing physical activity in schools and communities;
  3. Providing healthier food in schools; and
  4. Empowering parents with information and tools to make good choices for themselves and their families.

Actually, I support all four pillars, but I do not want them wrapped in a negative, stigmatizing shroud of childhood obesity. I want these efforts to be about healthy habits and healthy environments for children of all sizes, shapes, and weights. No fat boot camps, no biggest loser contests, and no fat vests for educational purposes.

I believe that effective programs must focus on all the reasons for kids to eat well and be active - great taste, body energy, brain power, school success, sports strength, and old-fashioned fun!

1 comment:

  1. Since it can be difficult to be the first person to post a comment, I am going to anonymously share a powerful message (very slighted edited) that I received from a PhD, RD, for whom I have the deepest respect:

    Having been an overweight child, I lived in constant embarrassment and shame. I cannot tell you how many times my own family would say - you are so pretty, if only you lost some weight.

    Increasing awareness to health issues (co-morbidities), not symptoms (weight status) is a much better approach. But since it is easier to see the weight than the illnesses, we point our fingers. We are working with preschoolers and even they don't want to play with large children.

    Strong programming to help all children understand Health at Any Size (HAES) must be started ASAP. Not to say anything about educating parents, school boards, health professionals, and the like.