That focus on preventing obesity has been central to the work of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) as well. Jamie Bussel, senior program officer at RWJF, emphasized that there have been important advancements in the efforts to prevent obesity over the last decade, a time period in which the Foundation has committed more than $1 billion to help all children grown up at a healthy weight.
Nearly one in five children and teens now have obesity, and adult obesity rates are higher than ever. Less than 20 years years ago, no state had an adult obesity rate over 23 percent. Now, no state has a rate lower than that.
These sobering statistics are one reason why nearly 100 advocates, nutritionists, researchers, Congressional staff members and others gathered on Capitol Hill for The State of Obesity 2018 Congressional Briefing in late February.
Trust for America’s Health hosted the briefing, and John Auerbach, their president and CEO, began the session by emphasizing that prevention is key.