Koco, that was a great point and from a military's prespective, especially in terms of the Army and Marines, this overall pre-conditioned lethargic, lazy, tech savvy and privledged "it's all about me" nature of today's children only causes the military to wash out at a much higher percentage of soldiers before the 6 weeks of basic training ends.
In the past, teenage recruits came directly from the streets into military basic training on average, at a decent level of physical fitness (the diet was to some degree, the same as today) due to their everyday civilian physical activites (playing outside, organized or unorganized, track, football, baseball, basketball etc) and the drill sergeant's knew that they only had to concentrate on improving the overall physical training, conditioning, stamia and mental attitude of those recruits and not be a ad hoc personal trainer/life coach/dietician/ "The Biggest Loser" type of instructor focusing soley on major weight loss.
Now, with an average platoon size of 30 to 35 soldiers in basic training and a cost of $50,000 per recruit to train,, possibly 1/2 to 3/4, instead of 1/4, of those recruits will wash out based on excessive weight and very little or no physical fitness at all coming in.
And the Army, after watching their readiness numbers steadily spiral downward, those generals will be forced to adjust their standards and allows a larger percentage based on "a new entry standard" to get initially weight challenged recruits through basic training after graduation and on to the next level, Advanced Individual Training (AIT), but... the problem will still exist and weight will still be the culprit that will wash out many more and once assigned to a regular unit, even more wash outs at a much higher cost in readiness and $$$$ to the military and the taxpayer.
And the way the Army & Marines currently operates, soldiers and marines are weighed at least twice per year (usually in conjunction with the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), to ensure they meet Army standards for weight and fitness. The Army has separate weight standards for those applying to join the Army and Marines. Soldiers who exceed the weight indicated for their age/height on the below chart are measured for body-fat content The weight chart is a screening tool. Just because a Soldier or Marine exceeds the weight on the chart does not mean that Soldier is overweight.
Body-Fat standards for Army Male Soldiers are:
Age 17-20 - 20%
Age 21-27 - 22%
Age 28-39 - 24%
Age 40+ - 26%
Open link for Army Height/Weight table:
And these body fat percentage numbers are common with recruits who come into the Army in good physical shape with body fat % numbers a little higher that those listed and maintain and over time, improve, meet and excced on those numbers. It's really different with those teenagers with starting percentages of 35-40% and above in overall body fat coupled with a severe lack of physical fitness.
The military deals with the mental & physical readiness "build you up by breaking you down" aspects as a tradition but the amount of excess physical & mental weight, coupled with the couch potato mentaility of today's teenagers? It will be a new challenge for the military.