GimmeFive – Debra Eschmeyer


Debra Eschmeyer, head of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign and nutrition advisor to the White House, updates us on the Let’s Move program and discusses the #GimmeFive campaign developed to celebrate Let’s Move’s five year anniversary.  And she does some pretty mean push ups too!

Publications & Reports


TEDxManhattan: You Be Watchin’!

6 Truths From TEDxManhattan: Changing the Way We Eat

3 Must-See TEDxManhattan Talks

10 Highlights from TEDxManhattan 2015

‘Let’s Move!’ Chief Weighs In on Taco Tuesday Flap

To Watch: TEDxManhattan 2015


  • In The Omnivore’s Dilemma, one of the New York Times Book Review’s Ten Best Books of the Year, Michael Pollan investigates the American way of eating through a natural history of four meals. Browse his other books and articles.
  • Michael Moss explores the rise of the processed food industry in Salt Sugar and Fat, winner of the James Beard Foundation Award for Writing and Literature and #1 New York Times Bestseller.



Discussion Questions

  • #GimmeFive ways you lead or can lead a healthier life.
  • What can parents do to combat negative marketing campaigns aimed at their children?
  • What do you feel is the role of advertising in marketing to children?
  • Do you think dramatic changes in advertising could solve problems?
  • How do we convince children to eat healthy?

Additional Information

  • Read this brief document from Let’s Move! which features the facts, the motives and proposed solutions of the campaign.
  • FED UP the movie has a wealth of information on issues, resources as well as some not so fun facts.
  • The Environmental Working Group’s Good Food On a Tight Budget Guide helps you get the most with your money without sacrificing nutrition and quality of food.
  • The Pew Charitable Trusts support The School Modernization Act. Give Schools the Tools to Prepare Healthy, Delicious Meals explains this legislation which would provide better access to kitchen equipment and infrastructure in schools.
  • The 69 year old Child Nutrition Act will expire on September 30th. It was last updated in 2010 but on April 15th, Congress will discuss its reauthorization. This Pew Trusts article, Congress Debates Child Nutrition, explores the key factors Congress should consider in their deliberation.
  • After launching in 2010, Let’s Move has already accomplished so much. Check out a full list of accomplishments and collaborations.
  • The CDC has a lot of of resources on adolescent and school health.
  • Food hero, columnist and author Mark Bittman covers policy, agriculture, health, the environment, cooking and eating. Check out his articles and cookbooks.
  • Check out Buzzfeed’s article 30 Simple Ways to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthier.

Take Action

8 Things you Can Do To Help America Raise a Healthier Generation of Children

  • In celebration of the 5th anniversary of Let’s Move!, take the First Lady’s #GimmeFive challenge. Take to social media and give us five things that you are doing to lead a healthier life. Then, invite your friends and family to join the conversation using #GimmeFive.
  • Join a Let’s Move! initiative. Visit here to see which initiatives you can participate in. Whether you’re a public official, an educator, an organization, a chef or simply a concerned citizen, you can get involved and make a difference. See below for some options.
  • Sign up for the Nutrition Action Healthletter, the largest circulation health and nutrition newsletter in North America.
  • Keep a food log. Be more mindful of what you are eating every day.
  • Write a letter to the PTA, principal or cafeteria coordinator at your local school to see how to improve the meals.
  • Start a community garden with Edible Schoolyard to support the edible education field.
  • Take the FED UP Challenge and go sugar free for 10 days.
  • Go to Change Food’s Tumblr site to share and give us feedback on your experiences.



American Heart Association

The American Heart Association provides numerous resources on health and nutrition. In its Getting Healthy section, you can explore the research, guidelines, etc. for battling childhood obesity.

Center for American Progress

Center for American Progress is an independent, nonpartisan policy institute committed to developing new policies and challenging the media to report on more important issues. Browse its website to learn about their projects and read its extensive reports.

Centers for Disease Control

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has a Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity (DNPAO), which works to make healthy eating and active lifestyles accessible to all. Browse their site for state and local programs, data and statistics and more.

Center for Science in the Public Interest

The Center for Science in the Public Interest,CSPI, seeks to educate the public and advocate for policies consistent with scientific research. With almost 2 million readers, CSPI’s Nutrition Action Healthletter is the largest circulation health and nutrition newsletter in North America. Sign up!

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities does research and analysis to make sure that low-income families and individuals are represented in policy decisions. The Center’s work includes but is not limited to fiscal issues, low-income programs and tax area, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, food stamps, WIC and child nutrition.

Food Research and Action Center

The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) works with hundreds of organizations, corporations and public agencies to improve public policies to end hunger and undernutrition.

The Pew Charitable Trusts

The Pew Charitable Trusts is an independent nonprofit organization that seeks to improve public policy, inform the public and invigorate civic life. Its Kids’ Safe and Healthful Foods Project, in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, provides analysis on school foods policies.

The Partnership for a Healthier America

Founded in 2010 but independent from Let’s Move!, The Partnership for a Healthier America unites public, private and nonprofit leaders in the fight to end childhood obesity. Amongst its many public and private partnerships, it also manages the FNV Campaign which Deb references in her talk. Michelle Obama is the honorary chair.

School Nutrition Association

The School Nutrition Association seeks to improve school meal programs through education and advocacy.

USDA MyPlate

The USDA has a wealth of information and works closely with Let’s Move! Specifically, they house MyPlate, which provides useful information to help individuals plan and think about what they put on their plates. The USDA has also led many efforts around policy and school nutrition centers, some of which Deb references in her talk.

  • Debra Eschmeyer

    Executive Director of Let’s Move! The White House

    Debra Eschmeyer leads the First Lady’s work to help America raise a healthier generation of kids and advises on food and nutrition issues. Read More