The following statement was made on NPR Morning Edition Yesterday and the transcript is available here.
About a quarter of entry-level candidates for the military are too overweight to serve or to make it through their first enlistment, according to the Pentagon. And the Defense Department spends $1.1 billion a year on medical care related to excess weight and obesity.There are two things that I just can't seem to wrap my mind around. Infants and toddlers who have weight problems and troops that are overweight or obese. This is further evidence that something is wrong on a population or systems level. Yes - at the end of any given day - the individual chooses the food that goes into their mouth, but what are they choosing from? Our foods are over sized, over processed and calorically dense (with sat fats and sugar). They are mass produced, sold cheap and mercilessly marketed to children and others. We need a strategy that changes the food availability so that the individual strategies we try, like health promotion and eduction will actually have a chance of making a difference.