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Sports leagues promise the White House they will provide more opportunities for people to exercise

Feb 8, 2024, 2:01 AM

President Joe Biden waves as he walks across the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Wedne...

President Joe Biden waves as he walks across the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2024, after returning from New York where he attended three fundraisers. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

WASHINGTON (AP) — More than a dozen sports leagues and players associations, from the NFL to the PGA Tour, have promised the White House that they will provide more opportunities for people to be physically active and learn about nutrition and adopting healthy lifestyles.

The White House announced Thursday that the leagues and associations are participating in the White House Challenge to End Hunger and Build Healthy Communities. The challenge was launched last year as a follow-up to the 2022 White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health.

At the conference, President Joe Biden announced a national strategy to meet an ambitious goal to end hunger and reduce diseases related to diet by 2030. The challenge calls on parties with a stake in the outcome to make “bold commitments” toward meeting the goal, according to the White House.

Doug Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, said it is “simply unacceptable” that obesity and Type 2 diabetes are among the leading causes of death in the United States.

He said the leagues have “stepped up” to help Biden meet his goal by signing agreements with the Jose Andres and Elena Delle Donne of the WNBA’s Washington Mystics.

Among commitments being announced by the sports leagues:

The NFL will expand PLAY60, its national health and wellness program to encourage young people to devote at least 60 minutes a day to physical activity. The NFL will also integrate the importance of nutrition into its messaging for the program.

The NBA and the WNBA will continue to develop programs and events that promote a healthy diet and physical activity to young people, including at the All-Star Game in Indianapolis later this month. Emhoff said he’ll be attending the game.

The NHL, MLB, MLS, WSL and other sports leagues have made similar commitments, he said.

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Sports leagues promise the White House they will provide more opportunities for people to exercise