Two weeks after announcing the unnerving news that childhood obesity has tripled over the last 30 years, and unveiling her own initiative to combat it, Michelle Obama has offended critics by discussing her own “wake-up” moment—when the family pediatrician told her that daughters Sasha and Malia were becoming overweight.

“In my eyes I thought my children were perfect,” Mrs. Obama said at the January launch of her initiative. “I didn’t see the changes.”’s article says:

[This comment has set off both valid and not-so-valid criticism in the blogosphere—everything from calling the first lady well-intentioned-but-misguided to hinting that she could be tipping off her daughters’ future eating disorders. Even with one-third of American children classified as overweight or obese, several critics are far more concerned with Michelle Obama’s anecdotal use of her daughters.]

The article continues with printed exerpts from bloggers like this one:

[Jeanne Sager, a writer for Strollerderby who admits to reading “everything through eating-disorder glasses” says she feels worried for the girls because their mother has “taken an extremely touchy subject out into the open.”]

Please allow me to paint the picture here: Your child begins to put on too much weight. What do you do? Most likely, talk with their doctor. Then, most likely, change their eating habits. Eating habits are called your “diet” by the way. Ok, now picture yourself as the first lady of a country. Aren’t you going to share your experiences regarding an issue that affects one-third of its children?

More Mrs. Obama:

Her interview on “The Today Show” where she talked about keeping Sasha and Malia grounded, finding time for dinner, and handling the pressures of being a style icon.


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