GSU professors speak on PBS talk show

Alanna Navin

Two Georgia Southern University professors have been featured on the PBS Talk show Tavis Smiley to discuss the long-term effects of childhood obesity.

Dr. Jacob Warren and Dr. Bryant Smalley, co-executive directors of the Rural Health Research Institute (RHRI) were invited to Los Angeles to discuss their new book, “Always the Fat Kid: The Truth About the Enduring Effects of Childhood Obesity,” which was released last week and is available in bookstores nationwide.

“We were very excited to get the invitation to discuss this issue with a national audience,” Smalley said in a press release.

“The time for action is now, and getting people engaged in a conversation about childhood obesity is the crucial first step in turning the tide,” Smalley said.

The book has received much international attention through features on and an upcoming feature in the London Times.

While not only discussing the negative health effects of childhood obesity, Warren and Smalley also discussed the new, emerging evidence of the “fat kid syndrome,” a collection of physical, psychological and social consequences of obesity that haunt overweight children for life.

“In writing the book, we drew upon decades of medical, psychological and social research, as well as bringing in our own lived experiences as formerly overweight children,” Warren said in a press release.

Warren said, “Our goal is to empower parents, community members, teachers and members of the healthcare workforce who are trying to make sense of this growing threat.”