We reported below on the lengths Georgia has gone to to educate the community about childhood obesity. Now watch this video entitled “Stop the Cycle,” from Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, the organization behind Strong4Life.
“The stark video opens with an obese young man having a heart attack and then cycles back in time to illustrate how lifestyle choices, made by others for him as a child and by him as an adult, contributed to this end.”
The video aims to continue the conversation about the clinical reality of the long-term consequences of childhood obesity, and its complex causes, both societal and parental.
It’s very powerful. But will it change behaviour?
Georgia has the second highest childhood obesity rate in the United States, with nearly one in three children overweight.
Their solution to the problem? A new “Stop Child Obesity” campaign which doesn’t muck around with its messaging. The ads include tv ads and print ads with slogans such as “Being fat takes the fun out of being a kid” and “Fat prevention begins at home. And the buffet line.”
The ads have won some praise for their attention-grabbing tactics. But they also have outraged parents, activists and academics who feel like the ads will bring on more stigma for an already bullied group of children.
The Georgia Children’s Health Alliance, which created the ads, said they were necessary to jar parents of obese kids out of a state of denial that their children had a problem.
They discovered that 75 percent of parents with obese children were not aware that their children were overweight, while 50 percent of parents didn’t realize that childhood obesity was a problem to begin with. And in a state where nearly 40 percent of children are overweight or obese — Georgia is in 2nd place for childhood obesity rates nationwide, only behind Mississippi — these statistics are problematic.
Here are some of the ads so that you can watch and decide for yourself which side of the fence you sit on:
What do you think of the ads?