Childhood Obesity declines in several states - WRBL

Childhood Obesity declines in several states

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ATLANTA, Ga. -

Nineteen states and territories report decreases in obesity among low-income preschoolers. A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Florida, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, South Dakota, and the U.S. Virgin Islands saw at least one percentage point decrease in their rate of obesity.

Previous research shows that about one in eight preschoolers is obese in the United States. Children are five times more likely to be overweight or obese as an adult if they are overweight or obese between the ages of three and five years.

Janet L. Collins, Ph.D., director of the CDC's Division of Nutrition says, "Many of the states in which we're seeing declines have taken action to incorporate healthy eating and active living into children's lives."

The CDC is encouraging state and local officials to step up efforts to drive down rates of childhood obesity by

1. Making it easier for families to buy healthy, affordable foods and beverages in their neighborhoods

2. Helping provide access to safe, free drinking water in places such as community parks, recreation areas, child care centers and schools.

3. Helping local schools open gyms, playgrounds and sports fields during non-school hours so children can play safely after school, on weekends, and over the summer.

For more information on childhood obesity visit www.cdc.gov/obesity/childhood

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