Overweight Children and Youth

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  1. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    Overweight Children and Youth

    Headline

    Nearly one in six adolescents ages 12 to 19 were overweight in the United States in 1999-2002, more than triple the rate in 1976-1980. (See Figure 1)

    Importance

    Children who are overweight are at an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular problems, orthopedic abnormalities, gout, arthritis, and skin problems.1 Also, being overweight can negatively affect children's social and psychological development, and it has been linked to the premature onset of puberty.

    Moreover, the health threats posed by being an overweight child can be long lasting. Children and adolescents who are overweight are at risk for becoming overweight adults. Overweight adults face many problems due to their weight, such as decreased productivity, social stigmatization, high health care costs, and premature death.2 In addition, overweight adults are at increased risk for type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, elevated blood pressure, stroke, respiratory problems, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, and some types of cancer.3 Given the seriousness of the health consequences associated with being overweight, and the rate of increase in the past few decades, the Surgeon General has declared overweight prevalence in children and adolescents "a major public health concern."4

    Trends

    Children ages six to 11 were nearly two and a half times as likely to be overweight in 1999-2002 as they were in 1976-1980 (16 percent versus 7 percent, respectively). During the same period, the percentage of adolescents ages 12 to 19 who were overweight tripled from 5 percent in 1976-1980 to 16 percent in 1999-2002. (See Figure 1)


    Differences by Gender

    Overall, boys and girls are about equally likely to be overweight. However, some differences exist within racial and ethnic subgroups. Among non-Hispanic black adolescents ages 12 to 19, for example, girls are more likely than boys to be overweight (24 percent versus 19 percent, respectively, in 1999-2002). (See Figure 2) However, among Mexican Americans ages 6 to 11, boys are more likely than girls to be overweight 27 percent versus 17 percent, respectively, in 1999-2002). (See Table 1)

    Differences by Race and Ethnicity

    Among adolescent boys and girls ages 12 to19 in 1999-2002, non-Hispanic blacks and Mexican Americans were substantially more likely to be overweight than non-Hispanic white youth. (See Figure 2) Among children ages 6 to 11, Mexican American boys are significantly more likely than both non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white boys to be overweight (27 percent versus 17 percent and 14 percent, respectively). (See Table 1)

    Related Indicators

    Vigorous Physical Activity, Disordered Eating: Symptoms of Bulimia


    State and Local Estimates

    2003 estimates are available for high school students (grades 9 to 12) by grade, sex, and race/ethnicity for selected states and cities from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss5302a1.htm#tab59.

    International Estimates

    None available

    National Goals

    Through its Healthy People 2010 initiative, the federal government has set a national goal to reduce the number of overweight children to 5 percent from a 1988-1994 baseline level of about 11 percent. To reach this goal, the Federal Drug Administration and The National Institutes of Health are encouraging schools and communities to educate parents and children about the importance of a healthy diet and physical activity.

    More information available at: http://www.health.gov/healthypeople/document/html/uih/uih_4.htm#overandobese

    What Works: Programs and Interventions that May Influence this Indicator

    Click here to view examples of programs and interventions that research has evaluated for this indicator. View programs


    Research References

    1Gidding, Samuel, Rudolph Leibel, Stephen Daniels, Michael Rosenbaum, Linda van Horn, and Gerald Marx. "Understanding Obesity in Youth." American Heart Association Medical/Scientific Statement, 1996. http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/94/12/3383

    2U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General's Call to Action to Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity. [Rockville, MD]: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Office of the Surgeon General; [2001]. Available from: U.S. GPO, Washington. http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/obesity/calltoaction/CalltoAction.pdf

    3U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Healthy People 2010. 2nd ed. With Understanding and Improving Health and Objectives for Improving Health. 2 vols. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, November 2000.
    http://www.health.gov/healthypeople/default.htm
    Gidding, Samuel, Rudolph Leibel, Stephen Daniels, Michael Rosenbaum, Linda van Horn, and Gerald Marx. "Understanding Obesity in Youth." American Heart Association Medical/Scientific Statement, 1996.
    http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/94/12/3383

    4U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Surgeon General's Call to Action to Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity. [Rockville, MD]: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Office of the Surgeon General; [2001]. Available from: U.S. GPO, Washington. http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/obesity/calltoaction/CalltoAction.pdf


    Definition

    Overweight is defined as body mass index (BMI) at or above the sex- and age-specific 95th percentile of the 2000 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention BMI cutoff points. For example a 10-year-old boy who is 4 feet 7 inches tall and weighs 96 lbs. is overweight.

    Body mass index is expressed as weight (in pounds) divided by height squared (in inches), all multiplied by 703. For example, a person who is six feet 2 inches tall and weighs 200 pounds has a BMI of 25.7, which would qualify as overweight in an adult.

    BMI age-for-growth charts for the United States are available at
    http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/bmi/bmi-for-age.htm

    Data Source

    Data for 1976-1994: National Center for Health Statistics. (2003). Health United States, 2003 with Chartbook on Trends in the Health of Americans. National Center for Health Statistics. 2003. Table 69. See
    http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hus/tables/2003/03hus069.pdf

    Data for 1999-2002: Hedley, Allison, Ogden, Cynthia, Johnson, Clifford, Carroll, Margaret, Curtin, Lester and Katherine Flegal. "Prevalence of Overweight and Obesity Among US Children, Adolescents, and Adults, 1999-2002," JAMA, 291 (23): 2847-2850.

    Raw Data Source

    National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III (NHANES III)
    http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhanes.htm

    http://www.childtrendsdatabank.org/indicators/15OverweightChildrenYouth.cfm
     
  2. winston churchi
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    winston churchi Member

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    I did not read your whole article....

    I am thinking the reason for this is that most parents work all day - as opposed to some thirty years ago when the mother generally stayed home. In that case she would see to it the kids ate a home cooked meal.

    Nowadays - and this is not an excuse from me but I believe a fact - most parents don't have this time - so its off to the fast food places - a donut for breakfast is quicker than pouring cereal...a burger and fries for lunch is easier than spending the time to make a sandwich ... for dinner - a quick take out cause mom and pop are too tired to break in the oven (which explains why its so clean all the time).

    The kids snack on easy foods like chips and soda as opposed to fruit and milk.

    The kids (when not in school) stay home and play (violent) video games instead of playing outside as we did when kids.

    Gym class may be their only hope but probibly not as most kids don't have the energy to pick up a baseball.

    Kids are growing fatter....parents are busier - they work too pay that high mortgage on a home in the suburbs and drive that fancy suv. They work endless hours to wear those fine clothes and look good at the pta meetings...

    In the end your kids are unhealthy and overweight and spend the rest of their lives trying to fight it with diet pills or the even quicker fix of plastic surgery...which means mom and pop will have work harder to pay for that.

    Thats my guess.

    Glad I am not a kid today.
     
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  3. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    You are 100% correct Winston.
     
  4. Trigg
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    Trigg Active Member

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    Your right in a way. A lot of parents take the easy way out when feeding their families. Over weight adults tend to have over weight children.

    It doesn't help though that some schools have a McDonalds in the lunch room and snack machines in the hall ways. Neither of which most of us had when we were in school.
    Also they've cut recess down to 20 min once a day, at least at my kids elementary. Middle schools have gym, but watch out that they don't play anything where there is a looser like tag or dodge ball. That might hurt someones feelings.
     
  5. freeandfun1
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    freeandfun1 VIP Member

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    Actually, most of the kids that I know that are overweight are kids that stay home all day with their mothers. Generally their mothers are overweight too.
     
  6. fuzzykitten99
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    fuzzykitten99 Senior Member

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    its also the whole thing about the need to finish everything on your plate, and the fact the parents dish up so much for

    their kids, then expect them to eat it all, even if they are no longer hungry. I actually think this is how I became overweight as a child. I wasn't really THAT overweight, but I was chunky. My parents would dish me up, thinking in their adult size portions, and bark at me to finish what was on my plate, even though i was more than stuffed.

    Then when I got to be a teenager, and in more control over what I wanted to eat, and how much, it helped. I also got into horseback riding, and went nearly every day. I went from a 14 to a 10, and could even fit in an 8 with certain clothes brands.

    i now am struggling to get from a 14 back to at least a 12 (my size before i had my son), but I am getting there. 14's are getting looser...but i am not quite there. it's just been harder after having my son. but i'm working on it. I'll be happy once I can fit into my pre-pregnancy jeans and other clothes.
     
  7. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    When I was young and still under my parents care, first off, fast food joints weren't even in existance. But even after McDonalds really started to take off, and all the others started cropping up, a trip to one of these joints was a "treat", and it was "rare"!

    Nowadays I see mothers dragging the whole damn family into these places, and these places know they do it. That's why so much of the advertising is aimed at kids, and the food at these places is JUNK, but the kids are stuffing it right down, and that's a HUGE reason why todays kids are so fat.

    But, inactivity is another reason. Not much more to say about that. Todays kids are all but sedentary compared to when I was a kid. They don't get a fraction of the excersize.
     
  8. Hobbit
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    Hobbit Senior Member

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    It's so sad about this, too, because these problems are easily correctable. When I was young, I was on the swim team and was never overweight. I also did some bike riding with my dad and played physical games with the neighborhood kids. Now, I'm pretty fit and trim compared to most of my friends, though the choice of food at college isn't helping.
     
  9. dmp
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    dmp Senior Member

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    I suggest partial blame goes towards the focus of Carbohydrates as a foundation of a diet. I believe had the USDA and other organizations adopted a more Atkins-friendly approach, we'd not have such a huge problem.


    That said...

    We've raised a generation of parents who appease their kids - they focus heavily on their kids' 'feelings'. We bend over backwards to promote self-esteem in kids - what we get is arrogant bastards who feel they DESERVE everything. We have instilled 'instant satisfaction' as a replacement for 'work hard, get results'. Those things combine in ways which promote a 'heavy' kid; the sense that kids want a donut...and they are satisfied by a donut, so they'll eat a donut - without worry of the consequence.
     
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  10. 007
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    007 Charter Member Supporting Member

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    By God you nailed it right to the floor! And the thing that burns my ass is all this "don't disrespect me" bologna. Kids have somehow come to the conclusion that respect is "given", not "earned". I don't seem to hear it as much anymore as I used to, but I can't imagine where these punks got the idea that respect is magically accumulated, and that strangers everywhere must automatically respect you.

    I don't get it... I always thought that respect was EARNED.
     

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