There was mixed responses from a bold move created by the Active Life Movement: Barbie . This is a wonderful organization that is committed promoting healthy living.
In their fight against childhood obesity, they attempted to send a strong message to children and parents with several ads that portrayed Barbie and Superman as overweight.
I understand that given the current percentage of overweight and obese children in our nation, organizations may feel drastic action is needed.
But my concern is that we are drawing too much attention to how a child looks.
This kind of approach is too focused on body image and taking a very negative approach in trying to shame kids and/or parents into compliance. I also am concerned that we are missing the fact that over 80% of our children don't eat a balanced diet, are low in calcium and iron, and are not eating enough vegetables and fruits regardless of their weight.
Eating healthy and being active is something that all children need to learn. By keeping it positive and fun, we help children enjoy learning about nutrition. Blaming, shaming and negative coaching is the very thing that gives nutrition a bad rap.
We all shy away from things that make us feel bad. So I encourage us to face this problem head on with patience, support and fun association to healthy eating. Help kids hear the word "healthy", "nutrition", "exercise" and think "fun, something I enjoy learning about, something I have fun doing!"
What do you think about this type of approach in addressing childhood obesity?