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Issue Date: Vol. 52, No. 10, October 2012, Posted On: 9/25/2012

Retired Military Leaders Say Childhood Obesity Threatens National Security, And Take Aim At Vending

Emily Jed
TAGS: vending, vending machine, Still Too Fat To Fight, Mission Readiness, childhood obesity, healthy vending, school vending machines, chool nutrition standards, federal vending restriction

WASHINGTON -- A group of senior retired military leaders says one in four of all potential recruits is turned away because they're overweight, presenting a threat to national security. And they're pushing for federal rules restricting what can be sold in school vending machines to reverse what they view as an alarming trend.

The group of retired admirals, generals and other senior military leaders, called Mission Readiness, will hold a press conference here on Sept. 25 to release a new report called "Still Too Fat To Fight," which follows up on a study warning of the problem two years ago.

The report reinforces recent recommendations by the Institute of Medicine, which call for making the school environment a focal point for addressing the nation's obesity crisis. Claiming that many children get as much as half their daily calories at school, "Still Too Fat To Fight" focuses on the need to remove so-called "junk" foods from schools and urges the federal government to update decades-old standards for foods sold in school vending machines, à la carte lines and snack bars.

The Obama administration is working on extending school nutrition standards beyond the cafeteria to vending machines and school stores, but there's still no word on when they'll be released. | SEE STORY

The report also supports steps schools are already taking this year to improve meals served in cafeteria lines. | SEE STORY

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