Fighting obesity will require changes everywhere Americans live, work, play and learn, says a major new report that outlines dozens of options – from building more walkable neighborhoods to zoning limits on fast-food restaurants to selling healthier snacks in sports arenas.
But schools should be a national focus because that’s where children spend most of their day, eat a lot of their daily calories – and should be better taught how to eat healthy and stay fit, the influential Institute of Medicine said Tuesday.
Among the most controversial of the recommendations: Communities could consider a tax on sugary sodas and offering price breaks for healthier beverage choices.
That prompted outrage from the American Beverage Association.
“Advocating discriminatory policies that uniquely focus on sugar-sweetened beverages is the wrong approach,” said an association statement that added those drinks account for just 7 percent of calories in the average person’s diet.
Most of us know we should eat less and move more. But the institute makes clear this isn’t just an individual but a societal problem: For a host of reasons, sedentary lives have become the norm and we’re surrounded by cheap, high-calorie foods.
The new report offers a roadmap of the most promising strategies to change that – and argues that the solutions can’t be implemented piecemeal.
“Each of us has this role. We can’t sit back and let the schools do it, or let a mayor do it or think somehow the federal government’s going to solve it,” said report co-author William Purcell III, former mayor of Nashville, Tenn. “These recommendations require concerted effort among all.”
A health advocacy group urged governments, industry and schools to adopt the recommendations.
“The country has begun to address obesity but we are still doing far too little given the tremendous burden it places on our health and health care costs,” said Margo Wootan of the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
Two-thirds of U.S. adults and almost a third of children are either overweight or obese, and progress to stop this epidemic has been too slow, the Institute of Medicine concluded.
For schools, it recommended that students get at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day – a combination of physical education, recess and other activities. Many schools have slashed P.E. and cut into recess in recent years in an effort to increase learning time amid tighter budgets. The report also says schools should serve healthier foods, backing national school nutrition standards, and teach nutrition.
Other recommendations include:
-Restaurants should ensure that at least half of kids’ meals comply with federal dietary guidelines, without charging more for the healthier options.
-Healthier foods should be routinely available everywhere, from shopping malls to sports arenas.
-More food companies should improve how they market to children – and if they don’t, the government should step in and mandate changes.
-To make physical activity routine, communities should be designed with safe places to walk and exercise.
-Public and private insurers should ensure better access to obesity screening, preventive services and treatments.
-Employers should expand workplace wellness programs.
-The president should appoint a task force to evaluate the impact of U.S. agriculture policies on obesity.
The Institute of Medicine, an arm of the National Academy of Sciences, is an independent organization that advises the government.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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