You have to admire Michelle Obama for taking on an issue — healthful eating — that could turn off millions of Americans who themselves are overweight. The first lady is taking on the underlying issues, from improved food labels to more money for better foods in schools, with a vengeance, tackling the problem from many angles.

But there’s another reason every parent should get rid of excess weight and teach their kids good eating habits: their financial futures.

You might argue that eating at McDonald’s is cheaper than making burgers from scratch — and it does save you time — but that’s hardly a reason to run for the Golden Arches.

So if you’re wondering if you should put your kids on a diet, even if you can’t seem to tighten your own belt, consider these costs, which will add to their financial security — or lack of it — over time:

Now, mind you, I love good things. People call me a foodie. But I try to battle the bulge with modifications here and there and a lot of exercise. (As a friend once said, echoing my thoughts, “I exercise so that I can have dessert.”)

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