First Lady Pushes Back Against Those Who 'Mock' Healthy Food, Exercise Efforts

PHOTO: First lady Michelle Obama speaks at a ceremony honoring retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma L. Vaught and women military veterans, at the Capitol in Washington,March 2, 2016.J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo
First lady Michelle Obama speaks at a ceremony honoring retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma L. Vaught and women military veterans, at the Capitol in Washington,March 2, 2016.

First Lady Michelle Obama took a swipe today at critics of her healthy eating and exercise initiatives that she launched more than six years ago.

"When folks mock our efforts, it’s parents who need to be out there saying, 'Excuse me, but our children’s health isn’t a joke. One third of kids being overweight or obese isn’t funny. Kids being diagnosed with diabetes and high blood pressure at young ages is just not a laughing matter,'" Obama said. “This is a serious issue, and we need to be doing something about it.”

During her remarks to bloggers and online influencers at the White House, Obama recounted her own efforts working with her daughters to try to get them to eat healthy food.

“I know changing habits and routines is not easy,” Obama said. “I know there are times when you don’t feel like fighting those food battles with your kids. But I can tell you from my own experience that when you start young with your kids, and you keep at it, eventually, you reap the rewards.”

She assured supporters that “what we’re doing is working,” saying that childhood obesity rates have stopped rising. She added that her work in this effort would not end when she leaves the White House next January.

“It’s not like I have a one-year or two-year time frame on this issue. For me, this issue is the rest-of-my-life kind of time frame,” Obama said. “Because I know that’s what it’s going to take to truly solve this problem.”