Michelle Obama’s “Obesity Task Force” – watch the details

We’ll find out on Tuesday what the White House thinks we can achieve, regarding childhood obesity.   I just got this announcement:

Tuesday, May 11th First Lady Michelle Obama and Domestic Policy Council Director Melody Barnes will unveil the findings of the Childhood Obesity Task Force report, the result of the 90-day review that the President ordered around the launch of the Let’s Move! initiative in February.

Several of the Cabinet members and administration officials who are part of the task force will also attend this press briefing and be available to the media afterwards: Office of Health Reform Director Nancy-Ann DeParle, Secretaries Donovan, Duncan, Sebelius, SBA Administrator Mills, and FTC Chairman Leibowitz.

If the findings emphasize physical activity without making major recommendations about diet, then you can call it a victory for the food and beverage companies.  But, I expect they’ll have a little of everything.  From what I’ve learned lately, I wonder …

  • Will it discuss ways to teach young families how to cook, especially using ingredients they’ve never tried?
  • Will it suggest ways to make sure produce is affordable?
  • Will it suggest a major tax on sugary beverages?
  • Will it tackle the issue of food labeling and food marketing (health claims on packages and advertising to children)?
  • Will it promote further study of the effects on obesity of hormone-mimicking chemicals on pregnant mothers and newborns?

Promoting physical activity is a good idea, too, for a lot of health reasons separate from weight-loss.  Mostly, I wonder if the report will spur any new action, beyond what’s already been attempted over the past decade.

(If you missed my story on why cooking classes might be important, here’s the link to KPLU.

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