U.S. needs to follow Mexico’s president’s push to get people to lose weight, exercise

11/01/2013 10:33 AM

11/05/2013 6:37 PM

Mexico President Enrique Pena Nieto has the right idea.

He is direct and forceful in saying that people in his country must lose weight and exercise for up to an hour a day. Nieto sees that people in his country are facing “an authentic epidemic of excess weight and obesity.”

It is as real of a problem in the United States as it is for our neighbors to the south. Nieto said that one of every three schoolchildren is overweight, McClatchy News reports. U.S. kids have it at least as bad.

“We cannot just cross our arms,” Nieto said. “Millions of Mexican lives are at risk. It’s time to change individual and collective habits.”

Like the U.S., Mexico is facing towering diabetes rates. Diabetes is a factor in one in five deaths.

The United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organization in June said Mexico’s obesity rate was greater than the the United States’. Mexico now has the title of the fattest populous nation in the world.

About 71 percent of Mexican adults quality as being overweight. Nieto’s top-down directive to people is essential.

President Barack Obama needs to be as direct and forceful. First Lady Michelle Obama’s “move” initiative isn’t enough.

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