Obesity: A national security threat?
January 3rd, 2011
01:02 PM ET

Obesity: A national security threat?

Is the childhood obesity epidemic in the U.S. a threat to national security?

"Oh, yes," said Maj. Gen. Paul Monroe, retired from the U.S. Army.

CNN Radio's Jim Roope talked with Monroe and an Army recruiter to examine the issue. Monroe, with the group Mission: Readiness, released a study saying the obesity rate among children and teens - one in three according to the CDC - is a threat.

"The military found that one in four recruits are not eligible because of weight," he said.

"And not everyone wants to be in the military, and when you reduce it by 25 percent, it's a real problem," Monroe said.

Sgt. 1st Class Jason Montano, an active-duty recruiter with the Army, says he wouldn't go as far as calling childhood obesity a threat to national security, but it is a challenge.

"As recruiters trying to recruit America's force, we have a lot of our kids this day and age that are obese," Montano said.

He says the military does have a program to get obese and overweight kids Army-ready.

Click the audio link to hear the complete story:

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Filed under: Health • Military • Nutrition
soundoff (46 Responses)

    YEP... if one of the fatties fell over on the president there could be trouble.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  2. N.E.

    B.K. Next left. I said LEFT

    January 3, 2011 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  3. N.E.


    January 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  4. phil

    I would have to choose Blac Ops. I'm all for supporting the country, but I don't plan on dying for it.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  5. duke

    Not according to SS Sarah!
    According to the fearless leader of the tea-drinkers movement,
    Any talk about healthy kids is more government in your business,
    It's funny how crack is wack,or just say no(slogans conjured up by drug dealers)you know(ronald reagan)is okay,but not healthy kids??

    January 3, 2011 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Walter

    We should immediately begin a relentless campaign of bombing our enemies with Happy Meals!

    January 3, 2011 at 6:59 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Cessar

    @Momo: That's true, I guess.

    January 3, 2011 at 7:12 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Cessar

    Sugar is good for the brain, but bad for your teeth.

    January 3, 2011 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
  9. kim

    Every new year it start the are we fat of course we are a fat greedy insanely obssessed nation about body image its sick. America is fat and there looking for some excuse when they know the diet is not healthy they dread exercise and with people likd sarah palin saying that its ok to be obese because the government is telling you to be in shape. Even though the first lady was just addressing a real problem but all these fat azzes dont want to be fat but dont want anyone to tell them how not to be fat. There just fat jokes

    January 3, 2011 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
  10. freeyourmind

    i just came back from my local gym in NJ. the place is pretty big with two floors and had to clear an extra parking lot when it was built. No exaggeration, the place was completely packed with no available lockers in the locker room. So where's all the obesity? That's right, the South. Along with all the lowest test scores and literacy rates. Call me ignorant but undeniable evidence is behind me.

    January 3, 2011 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. duke

    That war strategy has been implamented for the past 25years,the only problem is,it has been used against us in the name of free markets??
    America has been under attack in more ways than you'd like to know!!

    January 3, 2011 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Samsta

    Here's another teabag from the teaparty how many 800million lard a.... and 900million smoke x..amout disease infessted human look like the GOP's winning hah soon we'll all have life threating illness atleast the richy human asassinator doesnt have to worry about that hee hee.

    January 3, 2011 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  13. NOLA Saints

    Here we go AGAIN, let's blame the video games, computers, Obama, TV & USDA instead of taking responsibility for what we put in our own mouths.

    January 3, 2011 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kristie

      I totally agree with you! People make them selves feel better by blaming there unhealthy eating habits and non exercising and just not caring about there health, by blaming it on other people or technology or whatever they can think of.

      January 3, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
  14. phil on weight loss

    If you really want to get back to your body's natural weight, here's all you have to do:1) eat nothing but fruits and grains 'till noon.[about 80% of a human's energy is used to secrete enzymes to digest food. Fruit contains cirtic acid that helps digest food, saving energy you will be needing for step 2.)Eat plenty of LIVE green's and get some SUNSHINE ! (after 20 min. of UV exposure to the eyeball, your body produces a chlorophyl-like substance from live greens, and uses this to scrub fat from individual cells, but requires extra energy] 3.) Never eat more than 4-6 ounces of red meat per day. [red meat and dairy are very hard to digest and rob you of energy. And try to not mix complicated proteins, like bacon on your burger] 4.) that's it!!! Soon, you will be pooping at the same time each morning, and it will not be mushy, in fact you will barely have to wipe! You will start to feel kind of 'antsy' from the extra energy and will naturally want to go do something like take a walk. See you at the park! 😉

    January 3, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Ed Bailey

    Do they have there work cut out for them in utah. Come to think aout it it is usually the parents,not the kids.it takes them a while to get stupid,mean and lazy

    January 3, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Report abuse |
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