Michelle Obama Proposes Ban on Junk Food Advertising in Schools

02/26/2014 at 04:57 PM ET

On the fourth anniversary of her Let’s Move initiative, Michelle Obama is taking another step in her journey to fight childhood obesity.

The First Lady proposed Wednesday new rules that would ban the advertisement of sugary snacks and drinks on school campuses. “Our classrooms should be healthy places where kids are not bombarded with ads for junk food,” she said at a White House event.

The proposed rules would mean that everything from vending machines to cafeteria menu boards to scoreboards would have to nix logos and refuse advertising for products such as Pepsi or Coca-Cola.

Obama said the new rules would help parents who encourage healthy eating habits at home. “Their good efforts shouldn’t be undermined when they send their kids off to school,” she said.

Somewhat surprisingly, the American Beverage Association, which is led partially by Coke and Pepsi, supports the plan. (Healthier drinks made by those companies, such as bottled waters, would be fine to advertise.) And at least one recent statistic may indicate that this administration’s push for healthy living is succeeding: At the event, the First Lady announced that water just beat out soda as the most consumed beverage in America. “Go water,” she said while giving a thumbs up.

Listen to Obama’s speech in the video above. Then, tell us: What do you think of the proposed rules?

FILED UNDER: Food News , Health , Kids , Michelle Obama

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Showing 7 comments

Anonymous on

I think there are more important things to worry about than a Pepsi Logo…

Selena on

While I applaud her efforts to slim down the tots, I’m reminded about how 8 or so short years ago she sat on the board of Treehouse foods outside Chicago. They made “food like” products that basically went into most of the kiddies lunches at public schools. It was mostly lousy carbs, fat and salt. Happy she’s seen the light, and is making amends for accepting a board salary for fattening up the tots in the past!!

Carolyn on

Generally, I oppose government intervention at this level. In this case, I would take it a step further with underage children’s nutrition. Since the increase in diagnosis of ADD, ADHD, etc., etc. seems to have a suspicious correlation to malnutrition in conjuction with obesity, I would encourage mandatory counseling by a naturopathic nutritionist, who would have the ability to guide the parents or guardian of a suspected ADD child, to work within the family budget to nourish their child into proper balance. I cannot believe that so many suffering children cannot be rescued from a life of pharmaceutical torture. Get the damn sugar machines out of schools. If the kids insist on easy vending machine access, fill them with healthful choices. If that’s all there is, the kids will reluctantly get hooked on the right stuff. The teachers have enough to deal with, they do not need sugar psychos to add to their burden.

Anonymous on

Our growing boys in Middle School and High School because of the low calorie lunches. And what about the kids that only get one meal a day and it is the school lunch? The overweight kids get big from eating all the junk their parents feed them at home. Not school.

Jenelle Wildeman on

Glad the issue is being addressed, BUT school lunches have not improved. They are still being served from a box, can, etc. NOW, some schools have filled their soda machines with DIET soda ONLY! Is this better?

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