First lady promotes book and tackling childhood obesity
May 7th, 2013
04:52 PM ET
8 years ago

First lady promotes book and tackling childhood obesity

Washington (CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama's first book "American Grown" has been in print for nearly a year and Tuesday she held only her second book signing to date.

But she had a good excuse. "[I]f you recall, when the book came out we were in the middle of this campaign, or something or other. So we were a little busy," the first lady told a crowd of about 250 people packed inside a steamy Washington, DC book store.

"American Grown" is the story of the White House kitchen garden. The publisher won't say how many books have sold in the first year but only that 175,000 are in print. Michelle Obama has said all of the proceeds will go the National Park Foundation to help fund community gardens across the country.

"[T]he truth is the idea of the White House garden is not unique," Obama told the people gathered to have her sign their books. "Community gardens are a mainstay in so many communities across this country, from rural America to my neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago."

Daniela Gram, a fifth grader at Lafayette Elementary School in Washington, DC, lined up outside the Politics and Prose bookstore early Tuesday morning with a steady spring rain falling.

"I really like the first lady Michelle," said the 10 year old whose classmates grow their own vegetable garden at the school, which is only a short drive away.

Later when she and her mom met the first lady, Andra Gram said Mrs. Obama quizzed Daniela about whether she ate her vegetables. (The answer was an enthusiastic "yes!")

Tackling the problem of childhood obesity by introducing healthy foods to kids and their families is one of the goals of Obama's initiative, Let's Move, and one of the reasons she wrote the book.

"[T]he garden was really a way to begin this conversation about how do we educate our children about the food they eat and how it impacts their body and how all of that affects their health," the first lady said Tuesday.

Filed under: Michelle Obama
soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. Common Sense

    Like the FDA isn't to blame for most of it?

    May 7, 2013 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  2. Neutral Observer

    She could just tell them to have gut surgery like Christie did.

    May 7, 2013 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  3. Malory Archer

    And like the failed administration of her husband, the latest stats show, that despite her hypocritical campaign, childhood obesity has grown


    Most likely because the haters like yourself whined that she wasn't going to tell them what to do and doubled up on their intake of bad food. I recall during the First Lady's first anti-obesity campaign, the 2008 rethug vice presidential candidate was making s'mores and bashing the First Lady for said campaign. When Mayor Bloomberg tried to pass an ordinance limiting the size of sugary fountain sodas sold in the NYC, the 2008 rethug vice presidential candidate drank a ginormous big gulp in his honor in front of a fawning crowd of like-minded sheeple. That you blame the First Lady for your childish tantrum is laughable in a sad kind of way.

    May 7, 2013 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  4. lottie

    Good job Nice to see our first lady doing constructive work. Only idiots would find something to complain about here.

    May 7, 2013 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  5. Sniffit


    Haha...just wanted to try it to see what it's like. Underwhelming to say the least.

    May 7, 2013 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  6. Data Driven

    Vegetables: more liberal tyranny, eh, conservatives?

    May 7, 2013 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  7. rs

    The Right will naturally scream she is taking away their freedom to be fat.

    May 7, 2013 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  8. Catmandew

    Well y'all gotta give her some credit here. I mean writing a book is not an easy task. I don't think much of the Obamas but she did do a lot of work on the book and the proceeds look like a decent cause.

    May 7, 2013 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  9. king

    well its good the first lady is out their bringing awareness to something that will devastate our country if not tackled, awareness is the key, like the repubs always spew about socialist government ordering folks what to do. the first lady is making folks aware of the problems obesity will create for the individual, and eventually the country's healthcare system if its not tackled smartly. good for you miss Obama, this shows that your a patriot no matter what the blind hateful right wingers say.

    May 8, 2013 05:43 am at 5:43 am |