Michelle Obama has her share of critics for her efforts to get us to eat healthier and exercise more. But no one has been louder than Sarah Palin.
Now Palin will show us how she thinks we should eat healthier and exercise more — mama grizzly style — by writing a diet/fitness book.
"Our family is writing a book on fitness and self-discipline focusing on where we get our energy and balance as we still eat our beloved homemade comfort foods!," Palin wrote in an e-mail to People magazine.
Whatever you might think of Palin and her politics, we welcome her entry into the diet and fitness world. After all, Palin has made it clear that she dislikes Michelle Obama's approach. So let's see if Palin has better solutions than Obama.
You can imagine chapters about how to stay lean while eating wild meats from animals shot from a helicopter. She could tell you how much easier it is to raise a household when both parents don't have to deal with work issues and commutes. Palin could share stories of her family enjoying winter sports in Alaska to stay in shape.
Palin wouldn't even be the first Republican politician to take on diet and fitness. Mike Huckabee wrote a diet book of his own after he lost a bunch of weight, and remains in the political realm. True, Huckabee didn't run for president in 2012, but he remains a contender for future political office while hosting a cable pundit show.
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This may be remnant of Palin's objection to the way Michelle Obama promoted breastfeeding even though Palin herself promoted breastfeeding while serving as Alaska's governor. In other words, a lot of what Palin will write will likely fall in line with what Michelle Obama is advocating — the difference isn't in the content, but in the fact that the words come from Palin.
Palin mentions fitness as a way to get energy and balance; Obama would agree. Palin mentions still having beloved homemade comfort foods; Obama would agree.
The difference will come down more to politics (small p) than actual steps. Obama feels like government can serve as a role model in helping people move around more. Palin would disagree with how, not what.
Both ladies have one thing in common: they are both right. People do need to take individual responsibility. And government can lend a hand to encourage those who need help, and can get out of the way on other issues (e.g., corn subsidies).
We have advocated for Palin to get involved in this topic, especially since the states with the higher obesity levels tend to be "red states" where they might listen more to Palin than Obama. This time, Palin might be using her power for good instead of being critical of those who want to help. "If you don't have something nice to say …" We'll have to wait and see if Palin has something nice to contribute to the conversation on eating healthier and exercising more.