Fight Childhood Obesity

First lady Michelle Obama is speaking out to remove barriers to breastfeeding, throwing the spotlight on nursing as a way to reduce childhood obesity.

Looking ahead to what she will do in the second year of “Let’s Move,” Mrs. Obama said: “We also want to focus on the important touch points in a child’s life. And what we’re learning now is that early intervention is key. Breastfeeding. Kids who are breastfed longer have a lower tendency to be obese.

“And because it’s important to prevent obesity early, we’re also working to promote breastfeeding, especially in the African American community — where 40 percent of our babies never get breastfed at all, even in the first weeks of life, and we know that babies that are breastfed are less likely to be obese as children,” she said.

Toward that goal, Mrs. Obama is going to encourage more hospitals to be certified as “Baby Friendly” by Baby Friendly USA, a non-governmental organization that works with the United Nations Children’s Fund, or UNICEF, to increase breastfeeding opportunities. Only 3 percent of births occur at U.S. hospitals with the “Baby Friendly” designation. Meriter Hospital is proud to be one of them!

Patty Abraham, RN, BSN
Nurse Manager

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