This week, first lady Michelle Obama wrote an op-ed in The New York Times in response to recent initiatives by members of Congress to push back important nutrition reforms and measures against childhood obesity.
Obama, whose Let’s Move initiative has set the stage for greater nutritional awareness across the country, has led to changes like improved school lunches in 90 percent of schools and greater restrictions on the way that junk food companies target young consumers.
As a result of these and similar movements, obesity rates in young children have finally begun to drop for the first time in a decade.
“We know that when we rely on sound science, we can actually begin to turn the tide on childhood obesity,” writes the First Lady.
Yet, instead of further developing these beneficial programs, there are members of the House of Representatives working to roll them back. “They want to make it optional, not mandatory, for schools to serve fruits and vegetables to our kids.”
It wasn’t that long ago, Obama reminds us, that Congress decided to count tomato sauce on a slice of pizza as a vegetable. “You don’t have to be a nutritionist to know that this doesn’t make much sense,” says the First Lady.
In conclusion, Michelle Obama implores readers to turn to the experts, not elected officials, for nutritional guidance: “When we make decisions about our kids’ health, we rely on doctors and experts who can give us accurate information based on sound science. Our leaders in Washington should do the same.”
Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.