In her first morning show interview on the Today show on February 9, 2011, Michelle Obama discussed the one year anniversary of her “Let’s Move! ” campaign and how it has changed both her outlook on food and the future of the children of America.
Mrs. Obama said that the greatest success in the first year of the “Let’s Move!” campaign has been the broad base coalition of people who are stepping up. “We’re getting involvement from every sector – from businesses, from the medical profession, from teachers, from parents.” She went on to call the program a unifying issue, saying, “We all care about our children. I have seen that positive momentum, that people are ready to make some hard changes in their lives and the way we live.”
Matt Lauer went on to discuss her involvement in the school lunch program, and asked how school lunches will change for students by the end of President Obama’s time in the White House. Mrs. Obama said, ” With the passing of the Child Nutrition Legislation, we are seeing some of the most sweeping changes in the school lunch program that we’ve seen in generations.” She indicated that the quality of foods served will improve and noted that the focus will shift to nutrition education. “As important as the foods kids eat, the kids need to understand how to eat.”
Mrs. Obama has been widely known for her call for healthier foods and more exercise for America’s children, and during the Super Bowl, her party menu was leaked and caused much discussion. Among other foods served, the menu included potato chips, bratwurts, Deep Dish Pizza and Buffalo wings. When asked by Matt Lauer of the Today Show how she could serve high fat foods when she spoke so often about nutrition, Mrs. Obama explained her theory. “I’ve always talked about balance in this campaign…. If you go at a parent and say you could never take your kid to get a burger, you’ve lost them, because that’s not the reality we live in. It’s not my reality. So I do talk openly about my obsession with french fries, because I want people to understand the changes that we have to make in our lives are not whole scale changes. Many of the changes for kids are small things. Things like adding fruits and vegetables, and getting our kids moving, and putting more water in the diet. This are all doable things.”
When further asked about balance, Mrs. Obama shared that she tells her girls, “You can have birthday cake and can do whatever you want as long as you are eating your vegetables every day and getting some exercise. So this isn’t an all or nothing proposition, and it’s important for families not to get caught up in that, to think I can never indulge. Life is about good food, at least in America.”