Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Michelle Obama Promoting Eating Disorders?

"A year after she launched the Let's Move program to end childhood obesity, Michelle Obama visited this Army training post Thursday to witness what Hertling and his staff have done.

"The military can model so many wonderful solutions," she said.

By the time many of the young soldiers-in-training get to this Army post, they've been plumped up by fast food and soda and sedentary teenage years spent indoors playing video games.

The Army makes sure that by the time they leave after 10 weeks of basic training, they are considerably slimmer and fitter. Trainers here hope they've instilled a new approach to eating that will stick with the soldiers for the rest of their lives..." (SOURCE)

Sounds good right? The Obamas actually holding out the Armed Forces as an example to our children seems encouraging on the surface...but leave it to them to pick one of the things that shouldn't be emulated.

A recent article in the Washington Post details the extreme measures troops must go through to meet often times unrealistic PT standards and measurements:

"It is no surprise that the military services require a high degree of physical fitness, and the vast majority of service members can pass those tests. But the military also has weight limits based on height, age and sex. If a soldier's weight or waistline is over the limit during twice-a-year fitness testing, he or she is given two months to lose the excess.

Thirty-five percent of male soldiers do not meet the weight standards, and 6 percent of all soldiers exceed body-fat standards, according to a 2009 report published in the journal Military Medicine. The report said that about 24,000 Army personnel were discharged between 1992 and 2007 for failure to comply with weight standards.

Pressure to meet strict requirements has led some to take drastic steps.

The Army doesn't have data on the number of soldiers using extreme measures to meet the standards, but dozens of soldiers responded to a question from Army Times, many saying they use starvation, dehydration, pills or laxatives, and some have used - or are considering using - liposuction.

It seems that Michelle Obama should have done a bit more digging into military weight requirements before she decided to tell American children to emulate them... And what the hell with the military? Liposuction and starvation?

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