Former Republican presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee on Tuesday during the "State of Our Health" conference in Columbia, SC, said that the US must seek to decrease rates of obesity and other preventable health problems to help reduce health care costs, the AP/Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. During the conference, sponsored by AstraZeneca and the National Committee for Quality Assurance, Huckabee said that politicians often do not focus on preventable health problems because they require a generation, rather than a term in office, to address.

Huckabee said, "The sad fact is for the first time since 1776 and the 232 years of this nation's history, a child born in America today, because of the impact of obesity and childhood-related chronic diseases, is the first kid in the history of this nation who is not expected to have a life span equal to or greater than that of his parents or grandparents. Never happened before." He added that parents often serve their children unhealthy fast food, rather than healthy meals. Many "people think that the cause" of increased obesity rates among children "is because we've lost gym class" and "unhealthy school lunch menus," Huckabee said, adding, "I wish it were that simple" (AP/Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 9/16).
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