You’d have to be living under a rock not to know that childhood obesity is a hot topic. The first lady’s all over it and fat kid statistics are always in the news.

It’s a sad situation, but it’s one that makes me a little sadder than most. After all, I was an obese child.

I’m on the left, about 6 years old. My cousin Jessie is on the right.

Another new study finds that preventing childhood obesity starts before conception. The mother’s health — and health habits — are crucial, according to Harvard researchers.

You might think that as someone who grew up obese and went on to lose 120 pounds, I’d have lots of ideas. Everything in the first lady’s Let’s Move campaign is right on target — eat the right foods. Get lots of exercise. Be a positive, happy person.

The problem, though, is that most adults don’t live that way. Living healthfully doesn’t happen by chance. It is a conscious decision that one re-commits to every day. It’s not always tied to weight, either. I know lots of people who have never had a weight problem, but they’re far from healthy.

If I have children, I’d like to think that I’d be able to teach them healthy habits from the get-go. But it’s a careful balance, and if you shove anything down a kid’s throat, they’ll do the exact opposite. I also don’t want to give my kids issues, like “Don’t eat that or you’ll weigh 300 pounds, like Mommy used to!” 

If you have kids, do you teach them healthy habits? What is your opinion on childhood obesity?