President Bill Clinton honored 267  schools that were recognized by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation for creating healthier environments on Monday at the William J. Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock. Obesity is the No. 1 health threat among children, topping drug abuse and smoking.

The Alliance for a Healthier Generation works with more than 18,000 schools to fight childhood obesity. The organization reaches about 11.5 million kids a day with content that’s modeled from the American Heart Association’s science and research.

In his speech, Clinton congratulated the 250 school representatives on striving to help students eat better and get more physical activity. The recognized schools received a Bronze, Silver or Gold level based on their achievements.

Clinton said that despite running about 20 to 25 miles weekly for most of his adult life, he still had to have open-heart surgery in 2010. He stressed the importance of a healthy diet and exercise, saying, “You can’t diet your way out of good exercise, and you certainly can’t exercise without a good diet.”

The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, founded by the American Heart Association and the Clinton Foundation, works with schools, companies, community organizations, healthcare professionals and families to fight childhood obesity. Learn more at