Fit for Military Duty in Kentucky Goes from the Fittest a 100 years ago to today with 73% not fit for military service. Ouch.

Fit for military duty in Kentucky.  From best in the nation during World War I as highlighted in my November 9 blog post a Courier Journal op-ed piece by some retired generals with the Kentucky National Guard..

First, the marker:

Marker outside Breathitt County Court House, Jackson,  Kentucky (Photo by M. Stevens. 20140).

Marker outside Breathitt County Court House, Jackson, Kentucky (Photo by M. Stevens. 20140).

Now for a small extract from the Courier-Journal editorial pages on Nov. 9, 2014, styled “Fighting Obesity is a National Security Issue“.

Unfortunately, you can’t make up for a lifetime of poor nutrition and lack of exercise in a few weeks of military training — particularly not in Kentucky, where obesity is the leading medical reason why 73 percent of our young adults cannot qualify for military service.

The problems do not stop there. Nationwide, obesity rates among active-duty service members have also shot up 61 percent in less than 10 years.

We must turn the tide on the obesity epidemic by instilling good eating and exercise habits from an early age. Good nutrition starts at home, but many kids get up to half of their daily calories at school so it just makes sense to ensure they’re eating healthfully there, too.

For these reasons and more, hundreds of retired admirals and generals who are members of Mission: Readiness came out in strong support of the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, bipartisan legislation that required healthier school meals and snacks. School foods would no longer be laden with fat, sugar and sodium, and would instead incorporate fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

From the fittest to the not so fit.  What a difference a century can make.

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One thought on “Fit for Military Duty in Kentucky Goes from the Fittest a 100 years ago to today with 73% not fit for military service. Ouch.

  1. Comparing then to now, is apples and oranges. Back then, people had to walk more. There wasn’t the proliferation of junk food we have today. And kids didn’t sit inside all day in the air conditioning playing video games. So the idea that people today are “softer” then back then, makes sense.

    Certainly, healthy eating at school is a step in the right direction. But getting kids to be active, doing something they think is fun (basketball, tennis, swimming, whatever) is going to be the key to keeping us from becoming a nation of couch mashed potatoes.