One in 3 children in the United States are overweight or obese. Childhood obesity puts kids at risk for health problems that were once seen only in adults, like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Childhood Obesity Is a Major Public Health Problem
-Children with obesity are at higher risk for having other chronic health conditions and diseases, such as asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, and type 2 diabetes. They also have more risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure and high cholesterol than their normal weight peers.
-Children with obesity can be bullied and teased more than their normal weight peers. They are also more likely to suffer from social isolation, depression, and lower self-esteem.
-Children with obesity are more likely to have obesity as adults. This can lead to lifelong physical and mental health problems. Adult obesity is associated with a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and many types of cancers.
The good news? Childhood obesity can be prevented. Communities, health professionals, and families can work together to create opportunities for kids to eat healthier and get more active.
Make a difference for kids: spread the word about strategies for preventing childhood obesity and encourage communities, organizations, families, and individuals to get involved.
How can National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month make a difference?
We can all use this month to raise awareness about the obesity epidemic and show people how they can take steps toward a solution.
Here are just a few ideas:
Encourage families to make small changes, like keeping fresh fruit within reach or going on a family walk after dinner.
Motivate teachers and administrators to make schools healthier. Help them provide healthy food options and daily physical activities for students.
Ask doctors and nurses to be leaders in their communities by supporting programs to prevent childhood obesity.
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