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Now that America’s first lady, Michelle Obama, has the public’s attention on the perils of childhood obesity, she’s making moves from another angle. She wants healthy meals available for American children at school.

Actress Scarlett Johansson, who has been involved in “efforts to feed hungry children for years,” is backing Obama’s efforts, as well as the recently introduced bill called the Healthy School Meals Act of 2010.

In a country where millions of families rely on subsidized school lunches, Johansson wrote her Congressman urging him to support the bill: “Children depend on adults to provide them with nutrition and sustenance they need to reach their full potential. It is our responsibility, as adults, to give school children the nutrients and vitamins they so vitally need, especially during school hours where their food intake may be monitored. School is an environment where children develop life skills, skills that help them to become responsible young people who will one day be able to care for themselves. A means to a healthy diet and a nutritional education must begin in the school cafeteria, on the lunch line.”

Obama couldn’t agree more. “Obesity could now be an even greater threat to America’s health than smoking,” she said. “This generation is on track to have a shorter life span than their parents. … None of us want this kind of future for our kids or for our country.”

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