White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki didn’t say whether The White House was going to push for Americans to live healthily to reduce their risk of severe COVID-19.
During the press briefing, Daily Caller White House correspondent Shelby Talcott asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki if President Joe Biden and his medical advisors have considered telling Americans to live healthier during the pandemic. Psaki did not directly answer and instead told Americans to get vaccinated and wear masks.
“We have seen an effort from a few other countries to include a push for living a healthier lifestyle as part of its pandemic response. There’s been studies indicating efforts like weight loss can help prevent some of the more serious effects of COVID-19,” Talcott said. “Why hasn’t the president included a push for healthier lifestyles in his COVID messaging, in addition to pushing Americans to get vaccinated?”
Psaki said the White House relies on the advice of public health officials when crafting it’s COVID-19 messaging. She then pivoted to emphasizing vaccination, which has been by far the most emphasized talking point by the administration when discussing how to beat the pandemic.
“We know that the most effective steps anyone can take are to get vaccinated, get boosted, wear a mask, and those are the steps that we’re certainly focusing on,” Psaki said. “If they decide those are steps that are warranted and have a huge impact on outcomes, and they want to share those, we’d certainly echo those.”
Talcott pressed Psaki, specifically asking if encouraging healthy living has or has not been a part of the advice given by Biden’s medical advisors. Again, Psaki did not directly answer yes or no and repeated the masking and vaccination line. (RELATED: Why Hasn’t Dr. Fauci Told Americans To Stop Being So G*****n Fat?)
“Again, we do briefings with our public health officials every week, multiple times a week, and I think what’s most important to note is what we know is most effective, which is getting vaccinated, getting boosted, wearing a mask, and those are the components and the steps that we’re really focusing our attention on and encouraging,” she said.
El Salvador is among the countries that has emphasized losing weight, eating healthy and getting daily exercise and time outdoors as a means of reducing individual risk of COVID-19. Countless studies, including some commissioned by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other public health agencies, have found that conditions like obesity, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease are among the riskiest comorbidities for COVID-19.
A majority of the teens hospitalized with COVID-19 in the United States are obese, according to one CDC study. Another CDC study from spring 2021 found that 78% of COVID-19 hospitalizations involved people who were overweight or obese. Additionally, research has found that individuals who lose a substantial amount of weight saw better COVID-19 outcomes than those who didn’t and remained obese.
More than 42% of Americans were obese as of 2017-2018, according to the CDC.