Giant-Carlisle sponsors childhood obesity forum

CARLISLE, Pa. — Numerous strategies for combatting the epidemic of childhood obesity have emerged lately, but one could argue that among the most effective are those that happen where people get their food.

Giant Food Stores will convene a panel of local experts at one of its stores in Harrisburg, Pa., for its Giant's Childhood Obesity Forum on Aug. 16. Giant, based in Carlisle, Pa., is owned by Ahold USA, the U.S. subsidiary of Dutch supermarket operator Royal Ahold. It is often known as Giant-Carlisle to distinguish it from the Landover, Md.-based Giant Food, also owned by Ahold.

Participants will include Giant in-store nutritionists, school nurses, health educators and medical experts.

Efforts like Giant's are significant due to the scope of childhood obesity in the United States, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates to affect 17% of children and adolescents ages 2 to 19 years.

"Healthy eating choices begin at the supermarket for many families, which is why Giant is committed to helping customers make healthy choices while shopping," Camp Hill, Pa., Giant in-store nutritionist Sylvia Warner said. "We offer a variety of nutrition classes, interactive lessons and health information in store and online to enable kids and adults to take an active role in achieving healthier lifestyles."