Critics: Child Obesity Ads do More Harm Than Good

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Some say a new Georgia television advertising campaign targeting childhood obesity goes too far.

The Strong4Life television campaign produced by the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta features overweight child actors and admonishes viewers to "stop sugarcoating" the childhood obesity epidemic.

"Being fat takes the fun out of being a kid," is the message one commercial conveys.

"Some diseases aren't just for adults anymore," another said.

Dr. Linda Mintle, author of the book Raising Health Kids in an Unhealthy World, shared her expertise on childhood obesity on CBN News Channel Midday News.

Nearly 40 percent of Georgia's children are obese or overweight. CHA spent $25 million to bring public awareness through the new ad campaign

However, critics say the series television commercials attempts to shame families into losing weight.

"This campaign is an example of what not to do," Rebecca Puhl, director of research at Yale University's Rudd Center, said. "We need to fight obesity, not obese individuals."

Linda Bacon of the City College of San Francisco agreed.

"I think it's not only ineffective, it's actually quite damaging," she said. "If kids feel bad about their bodies, they aren't going to take good care of them."

*Original broadcast January 3, 2012.

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