Healthy Virginia: Gov. Warner's plan to fight fat

Governor Mark Warner's Healthy Virginia initiative drew a big audience to Newcomb Hall for a two-day summit November 29 and 30. The event featured a variety of exhibitors and panelists discussing the state of Virginians' health and ways it could be improved.

A big focus this year was obesity, especially in children. Part of the Healthy Virginia initiative targets what school kids are eating by urging improved breakfast and lunch options and limiting junk food choices in vending machines.

Many exhibitors touted their own, mostly non-profit, efforts prior to Warner's new brainchild and explained what they hope the future will bring with support from the slim man in the Mansion.

Warner's initiative encourages more exercise programs in grades K-12. When a third of the people deemed obese in Virginia are children, it's good to know awareness is rising and help is on the way.

The summit's two days consisted of seminars and panel discussions. Health workers from around the state convened for sessions on nutrition, physical activity, and fitness, and explored recommendations for programs to address the obesity crisis.

The Governor attended on Tuesday to give an afternoon address.

The Healthy Virginia Summit gets under way at the Newcomb Hall Ballroom.

Edie Eckman of La Leche League of Virginia explains the health benefits of breastfeeding infants.

Exhibit booths fill the Newcomb Hall art gallery.

Edie Naughton of Carilion Health System explains the hospitals'
Junk Buster  campaign.

Healthy Virginians sign directs visitors to exhibits at Newcomb Hall's Kaleidoscope Center for Cultural Fluency.

Inova Health System's Ivonne Radovich explains the sugar overload in popular soft drinks.

The Honorable Jane Woods, the Secretary of Health and Human Resources, opens the Summit.