To Fight Obesity, a Carrot, and a Stick

The New York Times

November 16, 2013


Childhood obesity, at long last, may have peaked — even among the poor, where the problem is most prevalent. Between 2008 and 2011, according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 19 states and territories saw a small but significant drop in obesity rates among low-income preschoolers. This is a problem that many people assumed would only get worse. So how has this small bit of success been achieved? One factor is certainly the massive behavior-change campaign being waged by everyone from Michelle Obama to the cooking teachers now training kindergarteners to cut up pears with plastic knives. Official America is now bribing, cheering, badgering and extorting us to eat fruit and vegetables, exercise, drink water instead of soda and cut down on time spent in front of a screen.
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