michelle obamaYou can almost guarantee that if President Obama or First Lady Michelle Obama endorse something, anything, whether it's a new sweeping reform that will affect every last American household OR a certain dog breed (say, Portuguese water dogs, like Bo and Sunny!), there's going to be SOMEONE out there who has a problem with it. Just because it came from the POTUS and FLOTUS. For the most recent example, look no further than a new program by Michelle's Partnership for a Healthier America to encourage people to drink more water for its health/energy benefits. ZOMG, how controversial!

Yes, somehow that has been the reaction to Mrs. Obama's water campaign from experts, who claim the White House is "overselling the benefits of water." Give me a break.

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The biggest problem I see with Michelle's push to drink up isn't that it's a waste of time or bizarre. It's a perfectly legitimate aim. We all know -- or should! -- to drink more water, especially in lieu of sugary, empty-calorie-laden drinks. The problem is that it's not controversial ENOUGH! Here, 7 much more controversial health issues that I could actually see being squawked about ... but also deserve to be discussed in a bigger way:

  1. Medical marijuana. Despite some progress in this department in recent years and research that keeps coming out, and CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta saying he "changed his mind on weed," there are still states that are doing their darndest to keep medical marijuana from patients could benefit from it much more than toxic pharmaceuticals. Speaking of which ...
  2. How we (over-)medicate. We and New Zealand are the only two western countries that allow direct-to-consumer marketing of pharmaceutical drugs. Why? Is it really okay that people walk into their doctors' offices requesting this anxiety med or that narcotic?
  3. Environmental toxins. Various experts love to belittle or blow off the idea that parabens, phthalates, BPA, etc. are screwing with our hormones and causing disease and illness. It would be awesome if the FLOTUS would push the FDA to come clean and be real with us about all of it.
  4. GMOs. Another one that seems to be a big controversy but could use a push for stronger science.
  5. Cancer. Are research dollars really going where we believe and would hope they are?
  6. Light drinking while pregnant. Controversial? Oh, hell yes! But is this really something women need to be worried about? Maybe we ought to do more research and have real, evidence-based debate about it instead of continuing to treat it as a total no questions asked no-no.
  7. The war on women. A woman's right to choose and have access to cancer screenings and birth control should NOT be up for debate. The year is 2013, not 1320.

I don't know about you, but these are all health problems/setbacks/challenges our country is facing that seem to have much higher stakes than the First Lady recommending that we "drink more water." 

What do you think about the FLOTUS' new campaign? What are some other health issues you think are actually deserve to be labeled "controversial"?

 

Image via whitehouse.gov