First lady Michelle Obama said Thursday that poor nutrition in the military was a “national security issue,” and praised the armed forces for taking steps to bring healthier options onto bases.
“Our military leaders know that this is not just a diet issue; it’s not just a health issue. This is truly a national security issue,” Obama said. “According to a recent Army study, more than a quarter of our nation’s 17- to 24-year-olds are too overweight to serve in our armed forces today. And even those who make the cut often struggle in basic training.”
Obama was in Little Rock, Ark. to announce a new healthy food initiative within the Department of Defense that will bring more whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat options to 1,000 military dining facilities, affecting nearly 1.5 million troops.
“That means more DoD installations will offer the kind of fresh, healthy food that the Air Force’s Food Transformation Initiative helped bring here to Little Rock,” Obama said, referring to a pilot program launched at the Little Rock Air Force Base.