Childhood obesity has been a huge health issue in the United States and needs to be taken more seriously. In the article I read, a study was done to see how children from ages 5-6 (kindergarten) to 14-15 (eighth grade) were when it came to being overweight or obese. The results of the study showed that 12.4% of children entering kindergarten were obese and 14.9% were overweight. When these same children reached eighth grade, 2.8% were obese and 17.% were overweight. This clearly shows that the rate of obesity in children is continuing to increase with age. This explains the horror of the fact that many adults are obese in the United States today.
When it comes to health in children, I think that it is very important to get children to eat healthier early on in their lives so that they are used to a healthy life style. Schools also play a huge role in this as well because, most of the day, children are usually in school or at day care. If schools and these facilities are serving a healthier menu, that alone can help with the percentages of obesity in children. It is also up to parents to keep their children on track when it comes to healthy food choice, and also being keeping them active. This can easily be done by getting more children involved in sports or some kind of physical activity; even if it’s for just thirty minutes a day.
One initiative in the government that stands out to me is First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign. It is an initiative to decrease child obesity in the country and get children on a track to a healthier lifestyle. The website for this includes facts about childhood obesity, ways to eat healthier, and also ways to get active. The website even gives options for ways you can get involved and things you can do to get started in allowing children to live a healthier and longer life.
Cunningham, Solveig A, et. al. “Incidence of Childhood Obesity in the United States”. New England Journal of Medicine 370 (2014), assessed August 8, 2014.
First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Initiative: letsmove.gov