Indian doctors body in US launches anti-obesity campaign

Washington, June 5 (IANS) The American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) has launched a new campaign to check childhood obesity in the US.

"With obesity proving to be a major epidemic affecting nearly one third of the nation's population, we have a responsibility to save future generations by decreasing childhood obesity," Jayesh Shah, who assumed charge as the youngest AAPI president last week, said in a statement.

"We at AAPI are proud to undertake this national educational tour around the United States, impacting thousands of children and their families," he added.

As part of the programme to bring about awareness about the problem of childhood obesity, AAPI will hold school walkathons and educate students, teachers and parents about the problem of obesity through a programme called 'Adopt a School - Childhood Obesity Awareness Campaign'.

The largest ethnic organisation in the US representing 100,000 physicians of Indian origin and fellows, AAPI will work to adopt at least 100 schools in as many states in the US as possible.

Stating that the need to organise the national level campaign is a way towards realising one of AAPI's main goals, Shah said: "Our primary goal is to educate the public on diseases and their impact on health... AAPI has physicians in almost every city and town of USA. With this extensive network we should be able to spread message on childhood obesity by following the template plan. We are also exploring the use of social media and phone 'apps' as healthy lifestyle tools."

AAPI will organise the campaign in nine cities with seminars and music concerts by popular Bollywood playback singer Shankar Mahadevan.

The tour will begin June 8 in Cleveland, Ohio, and will move on to Los Angeles June 9, Dallas June 15, New York June 16 New Jersey June 22 Atlanta June 2, Tampa June 29, and San Jose, California, June 30.

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