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February 2011

Why Work on Childhood Obesity?

There are lots of resons that I like working on childhood obesity. None of them seemed linked to the pure data that explains the problem.(obesity rate widget) Data is compelling. The control of the widget helps make you think about the issues behind the data. I typically can be a bit geeky but I am not sure I would have "connected the dots" these trends, the widget and data with people.

However, I was at a conference a at the end of last year,  a doctor from the CDC gave a talk that has stayed with me. (My sister is a doc. ) I know what good doctors do. I know how hard they work to be a good doctor. I know what it means to my sister to help someone. Anyway, this doctor (I need to go back and look at the agenda to get the name straight.) talked about walking away from bedside practice to take a job at the CDC.  She looked into the room and of activists working on health and childhood obesity and pulled from a lifetime of experience to tell us  "we are all at the bedside." 

She took a job at the CDC because she realized shifting just a few percentage points on this issue, was going to save many families from the need to hold hands of loved ones with tubes up thier noses. She knows addressing childhood obesity was going to reduce suffering, pain and loss on a massive scale.  She knows what early death looks like in a hospital. She has faces on the numbers below.   She challenged of us in the room to dig deeper in our work. She challenged us to realize we all stand with those families everyday.

I didn't go to medical school but I have been at a bedside during to many of those moments. I can easily put my own faces behind those shifting numbers. I am also very proud of the work we are doing at Preventobesity.net. 

Check it out. think. act. Take the widget for your site.