Study: Less Fat Kids in the U.S. Today

You're not going to believe this.  After all my posts about obesity, especially in kids, a new report came out today that it's actually going down.

According to Lydia DePillis at The Washington Post, "Obesity rates are leveling off and even dropping, in a sign that the public health crisis of the moment may have eased."

Reductions in childhood obesity were seen in New York and Philadelphia, two of the cities where it hit hardest, perhaps because of the numbers of poor who live near fast food restaurants, who, other studies have shown, tend to be heavier, most likely because of the proximity (and low prices).

But Mississippi beats them both, achieving an impressive drop from 43.9% of children being obese and overweight in 2005 to 40.9% in 2011, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, as referenced by DePillis.  That may not sound like much but we're talking 90,000 kids.

DePillis also noted in her story that "an April 2013 analysis showed that obesity rates declined from 10.5 to 8.9 percent in Eastern Massachusetts between 2004 and 2008, and, after years of rates only going up, .
2012 results from New Mexico show that 'the obesity rates among kindergarteners and third graders had leveled off.'"

In addition, though the number of overweight and obese kids went up in North Carolina overall between 2005 and 2009, some counties did see "significant declines after implementing healthy living programs based on the Centers for Disease Control’s community guide."

DePillis also disclosed that the number of fat kids in Kearney, Nebraska declined in grades one through five by a whopping 13.5% between 2005 and 2011.

So, what are we to make of this?  We still have a long way to go.  Kids still need to eat less, or healthier, and exercise more (mine included, though he's skinny as a rail).  But it's not falling on deaf ears, all the advice and programs to help kids (and parents) with their weight.

Now we can turn our attention to the kids who don't eat, like the four-year-old I remember from preschool who would eat only half her sandwich because she didn't want to "get fat."


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