Have you seen the new anti-obesity ad? - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Have you seen the new anti-obesity ad?


Have you heard about the controversial ad campaign created by our neighbors in Georgia? The commercials are meant to raise awareness about childhood obesity, but some say the message is all wrong.

As a nutritionist and a mother, Melinda Bonner had to do a double take when she heard a PSA coming from her television last week. "What concerned me even more was that my daughter was watching TV," said Bonner.

The ad was a creation from Children Healthcare of Atlanta. In one of the ads a little boy sits across from his mother, asking, "Mom, why am I fat?"

The mother, obese herself, takes a sigh and look down at herself. The attention- grabbing ads are intended to stop childhood obesity. But for parents like Bonner, it's the wrong approach saying, "It's putting the image of a fat child out there on television where other children can see and even if you are smaller it's teaching those healthier children that the fat kid is less of a person."

It's that kind of image she wants to shield from her 10 year old daughter, Reagan.

As a nutritionist Bonner, tries to incorporate a healthy lifestyle for her daughter. Reagan watched the edgy PSA. Her take on it, "I think it kind of might embarrass the kid because they're like sending all around the world, I'm fat and people don't like to say that."

Reagan sometimes battles her own weight issues. "It's a little hard sometimes because like the sugar really tastes good and you want even more but you know you don't need it," she said. But seeing these straight forward ads she says may not be the best way to get the message heard.

"It is (commercial) embarrassing the kids, they're obese and these commercials could encourage other kids to pick on them.

The PSA's were derived from a campaign called "Strong4life" by the Children's Healthcare.

In a statement on their website reads, "it's about bringing attention to the serious health risks threatening overweight and obese children and not sugarcoating it."

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