Childhood obesity rate shows modest decline: CDC

A 10-month-old baby boy, whose name was not given, sits on a cot at a children hospital in the Hunan provincial capital of Changsha on August 11, 2010.  Doctors in central China are puzzling over the 10-month-old baby boy who weighs 20 kilos (44 lbs) -- about as much as a normal child of six years -- but is otherwise healthy, state media reported.     AFP PHOTO     CHINA OUT (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)
This 10-month-old baby boy, whose name was not given, weighs 44 pounds, about as much as an average 6-year-old. Credit: STR/AFP/Getty Images

The obesity rate among low-income children between the ages of 2 and 4 is falling in 19 U.S. states and territories after having doubled in the last 30 years, a report released Tuesday shows.

Although the declines were small in most cases, officials from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said they were a sign of progress.

“It’s encouraging news but we’re very, very far from being out of the woods,” CDC Director Tom Frieden said on a call with reporters. “The fight is far from over.”

Obesity rates fell by more than 1 percentage point in Florida, Georgia, Missouri, New Jersey, South Dakota and the U.S. Virgin Islands from 2008 to 2011, and by smaller amounts in 13 other states.

In 21 states and territories there was no significant change in obesity prevalence, and three states saw obesity rates tick slightly upward in the years under review.

Between 1976 and 1980, the obesity rate among children 2 to 5 years old was 5 percent, compared to 12.1 percent from 2009 to 2010.

The study included 12 million children from 40 states, Washington, D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Researchers measured their height and weight between 2008 and 2011 to calculate body mass index. Most of the children were participants in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, which provides federal assistance to states for low-income families.

Ten states — Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, South Carolina, Virginia, Delaware, Wyoming, Utah and Maine — did not participate in the CDC study because they either did not have consistent data between 2008 and 2011, or they changed their methodology, which could have affected results, the CDC said.

About one in eight preschoolers — 12.5 percent — in the United States is considered obese, and these children are five times more likely to be obese as an adult. Obesity rates are higher among black (one in five) and Hispanic children (one in six).

The news drew the attention of first lady Michelle Obama, who developed the “Let’s Move!” campaign to combat childhood obesity.

“While this announcement reflects important progress, we also know there is tremendous work still to be done to support healthy futures for all our children,” she said in a statement.

CDC officials said they hope the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform law that requires most Americans obtain insurance by 2014 or pay a fine, will help rates continue to decrease because obesity screening is covered under the law by most private insurance plans.

Childhood obesity often leads to other health complications, including high cholesterol, high blood sugar, asthma and mental health problems, the CDC said.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

National Guard to withdraw from riot-torn Ferguson, Missouri

By Carey Gillam and Scott MaloneFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The governor of Missouri ordered the withdrawal on Thursday of National Guard troops from riot-torn Ferguson,…

National

Sprint and T-Mobile offer further price discounts

Sprint unveiled a plan on Thursday that gives subscribers access to unlimited data for $60 a month, the industry's cheapest unlimited data offering.

National

Hundreds pay it forward at Florida Starbucks in…

The spontaneous chain of kindness continued for about 11 hours, totaling 457 transactions by the time it ended.

National

Weather system east of Caribbean could turn into…

An area of low pressure located east of the Caribbean Sea has a 50 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm in the next 48 hours, U.S. forecasters…

Movies

Review: 'When the Game Stands Tall' is both…

The high school football saga "When the Game Stands Tall" fumbles around for a focus while Jim Caviezel offers the most low-key coach in history.

Movies

Girlfriend in a coma: Chloe Grace Moretz

Chloe Grace Moretz is the best cheerleader "If I Stay" could ask for. As the star of the film adaptation of the successful YA novel…

The Word

The Word: Summer lovin' for Zac Efron and…

Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance between…

The Word

The Word: The Zac Efron-Michelle Rodriguez summer fling…

  Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance…

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…