Children's International Obesity Foundation Challenges Candidates' McCain and Obama About Obesity Epidemic

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A report released recently by the University of Michigan stated, unequivocally, that OBESITY is the most dangerous and prevalent health hazard facing the United States, surpassing nine other cited health problems. To date, neither 2008 presidential candidates, John McCain nor Barack Obama have made any public statement regarding this issue. Children's International Obesity Foundation(CIOF) has taken notice.

With the presidential election less than two months away, childhood obesity educators and experts are concerned that the nation's number one health epidemic, obesity, is being neglected by the presidential candidates. Robert Hinnen, Executive Director of the Children's International Obesity Foundation (CIOF) stated in a recent press conference, "Yes, there has been a tremendous amount of news focused on the political hype of the DNC and RNC conventions, however, drawing party lines should have nothing to do with saving America's children -- overweight and obesity issues are not being addressed by either McCain or Obama and I am very disappointed and surprised that neither one has stepped forward. Perhaps the addition of the new vice-presidential candidates, Sarah Palin and Joseph Biden will infuse interest in this epidemic...how many more children and teenagers lives need to be jeopardized before it is too late?"

The President-elect will be faced with two major challenges that CIOF believes is enabling this epidemic to continue in the United States, according to Senior Advisor, Douglas Castle. "First, the legacy of the Department of Education's 'No Child Left Behind' Act has eliminated physical education and other wellness programs in favor of saving funding. Secondly, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seems unwilling to do little more than controlling the American public's behaviors concerning health and wellness," says Castle.

On November 21st, CIOF will host the premiere of Shinebox Media Productions', "Killer at Large" (http://www.killeratlarge.com) at the Times Center in New York City. The documentary film reveals startling details of the American obesity epidemic and explains why this issue has crossed from a public health crisis to a national security issue. According to former Surgeon General, Richard Carmona, "Obesity is a terror within. It is destroying our society from within and unless we do something about it, the magnitude of the dilemma will dwarf 9/11 or any other terrorist event..." Carmona is among many of the worldwide and nationwide leaders that are interviewed in the film. Hinnen responds, "'Killer at Large' reinforces the need to have a president who truly understands the impact that obesity is having on this country."

"Being the Commander-In-Chief of the most powerful military in the world requires a great deal of dedication, as does addressing the growing issues of unemployment, housing foreclosures, failing capital markets, the declining Dollar, and all of those other admittedly important areas, but I would respectfully ask McCain and Obama to reveal what they have in mind regarding the obesity epidemic that is killing our children. Many of them are just turning eighteen, but they might have a difficult time squeezing into the confines of those voting booths...Perhaps CIOF can collaborate with Democrats and Republicans alike to encourage them to 'squeeze in' to vote by giving them some hope that action will be taken," stated Castle. As CIOF continues to fight childhood obesity, they are ever watchful of what the candidates' next step will be to address this epidemic.

ABOUT CHILDREN'S INTERNATIONAL OBESITY FOUNDATION (CIOF): CIOF is an approved IRS Section 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public foundation and charity whose international mission is to eliminate dangerous overweight and obesity in children and teens through prediction, prevention, support and treatment. Each year, health complications caused by overweight and obesity in children and teens are responsible for a steadily increasing mortality statistic. CIOF notes that this is the first generation of children in the United States Of America who are not expected to live as long as their parents. To learn more about this problem and what you can do to help, visit http://www.ciofoundation.org.

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Lucia Kern

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