Mission: Readiness ties obesity to national security – News – Times Record


Posted: September 28, 2020 at 4:58 am

Food insecurity and malnutrition have been linked to obesity. But did you know that they are linked to our national security?

Mission: Readiness is a group of 750 retired admirals, generals, and other top military leaders who are members of who "recognize that the strength of our country depends on a strong military."

On Sept. 22, the non-partisan group released a study showing a link between food insecurity, obesity and being disqualified from military service.

The study shows that nationwide, of those between the ages of 17-24, 71 percent do not qualify for military service. Of that 71%, 31 percent are ineligible to serve due to obesity issues.

Former Adjunct General of the Arkansas Army National Guard and the Arkansas Air Guard, Maj. Gen. (Ret.) William Wofford explained it like this: "If you think of all of the young men and women that are in school right now, 17-24 years of age. You think of every 10 of them. Theres 4 out of those 10 that are ineligible to join the military because they dont have a high school education or a GED, they cant pass a physical fitness test. Theyre obese."

He goes on to explain there are three more out of those 10 that are ineligible because they have some form of a criminal record.

"The bottom line is theres only 3 out of 10 young men and women in your community, in my community, that can even consider joining the military," Wofford said.

Mission:Readiness is not just pushing for people to join the military. "Obesity is tough" Wofford explained. He also noted that Arkansas has the third-highest rate of food insecurity in the United States, with 23% of children experiencing some form of insecurity.

In Arkansas, the organization notes several methods of assistance for families including local food banks, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Womens Infants and Childrens (WIC) program.

For more information about Mission:Readiness and the "Breaking Point: Child malnutrition imperils Americas national security visit strongnation.org/missionreadiness.

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Mission: Readiness ties obesity to national security - News - Times Record

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