Is Michelle Obama’s Crusade Against Childhood Obesity Working?

Good news! Michelle Obama is banging it out of the park. And that’s not (just) a reference to her new hair. The First Lady’s campaign to get kids healthier is producing results: according to a new press release, “the national childhood obesity rate has leveled off, and even declined in some cities and states.”

Granted, this declaration is coming from the White House itself, but the numbers appear consistent with other reports. USA Today notes that in Mississippi, a state where Ms. Obama has focused some of her efforts, has seen its childhood obesity rate drop 6 percent in as many years. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation which studies topics of kids’ health similarly reports that the obesity rate has finally stopped growing, noting significant declines in California, Philadelphia and New York City.

While it is practically tradition for First Ladies to advocate for non-controversial causes during their time in the White House, not all of them can boast a success rate. This month marks the three-year anniversary of her Let’s Move! campaign. In addition to a steadying youth obesity rate, the White House also credits Let’s Move! with helping to promote physical activity, making healthy food more affordable and accessible, and improving the healthiness of school lunches.

Without questioning the data itself, some critics are skeptical of how much influence Obama has actually had toward any improvement in national adolescent health. The Daily Caller cites scientists in a New York Times article who “doubt that anti-obesity programs actually work.” They also link to a USDA study that states that nearly half of all of the nation’s most impoverished people claim to have lost weight because they were unable to afford food.

Either way, there’s no denying that Obama has stayed committed to keeping the conversation on combatting childhood obesity alive. In the upcoming weeks, Obama has scheduled several media appearances in order to bring attention to the initiative, as well as meetings with various community leaders to make them allies in the cause.


Related Stories:

Beyonce Shows Support for Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign

Michelle Obama Announces Plan to Get 1.7 Millions Kids Active

Michelle Obama Joins Chef Anne: Salad Bars in Every School


Photo Credit: SodexhoUSA


Tammy Baxter
Tammy B4 years ago

I think she's doing a wonderful job.

Lori Ann Hone
Lori Hone5 years ago

Michelle Obama has been a wonderful force and influence on the issue of obesity, starting where everything starts, with the children. If kids learn to eat healthy as children it will stay with them a life time. Much harder to get adults who have always eaten badly to change their ways. Diets don't work, healthy eating/lifestyle is what works. Besides, how can an adult sit and eat a bag of chips while their children and munching on carrots. The children now are the future of everyone and everything!

Alex H.
Alex H5 years ago

I really really admire Michelle Obama's efforts on this issue,but I can't see her winning the fight against the unethical greed of the major agribusinesses and fast food chains which make billions of dollars from feeding us and our kids addicitive,sugar,salt,chemical-laden and genetically modified products,which are putting the liver,kidneys and digestive organs under unsustainable pressure,and causing the obesity in the body.The widespread microwaving of food,turning it into a toxic molecular disaster area that the body doesn't recognise,is also a factor.When the body is unable to eliminate properly,it just hoardes fats and toxins,a guaranteed recipe for cancer and other lifestyle diseases.!!

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey5 years ago

And she was able to talk normally through the entire workout, suggesting she is going slow so the audience can see the different moves clearly.

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey5 years ago

I will say this about Michelle Obama: She is without a doubt the fittest First Lady ever.

On the Dr. Oz show she demonstrated her workout using a jumprope. Dr. Oz could barely hop. She jumped rope like a boxer and better, using all kinds of different techniques.

She looked like an athlete at a training. It was an amazing demonstration of her actual fitness(not feigned a bit).

Heidi Aubrey
Heidi Aubrey5 years ago

I don't think she is going to make an even small, tiny blip in the obesity rate. Not until people getting food stamps(the poorest are the most obese)start making better food choices, which will not happen.

This is not going to be popular(Care2), but have heard it with my own ears.

"The only reason I have 6 kids is for the income(SSI per child) and they are easy to feed(junkfood). She was pregnant with number 7 when she said this directly to me.

I hope I hid my stunned horror and immediate gut level, disgust, well.

There ARE those who simply work the system to make a living. They never were, or ever planned on earning an honest living through a job.

Christopher W.

If She Really Did Care About Kids She Would Remind Her Hubby About Putting Labels On GMO Food ?

Dennis D.
Past Member 5 years ago

Kudos To Mrs. Obama. She has shown that she is trying to make a positive impact on society.

Roberta G.
Roberta G5 years ago

Lydia W. What is the matter? That is not Mrs Obama you are describing.

She is not controlling what YOU eat; rather she is trying to teaching children (and adults) healthy eating habits that last a lifetime. If you want to pig out on supersize meals with lots of sodium, sugar and additives, that is your right.

And can you document any of your other comments? I don't think so!

Noreen Niamath
Noreen Niamath5 years ago

She is certainly making an impact. I hope some measures are taken to have a good work continued when she is no longer First Lady. Thanks Michelle for looking after our future.