Study shows obesity rates drop for toddlers
Updated On: Feb 26 2014 05:11:12 PM CST
Efforts to curb childhood obesity may be paying off.
A new study says obesity rates have been cut nearly in half in one age group.
The Centers for Disease Control says American youngsters are getting healthier.
According to a new study, obesity has dropped 43 percent among 2 to 5 year olds in the last decade.
"This is great news because obviously the efforts that we have all been making are making a difference," said Dr. Nathan Hagstrom with Lehigh Valley Health Network.
Hagstrom says there are a number of reasons for the dramatic decline.
More women are breast feeding. Nutrition programs have focused on healthier food. And fitness campaigns like the President's Fitness Challenge
and the First Lady's "Let's Move" initiative have taken hold.
Locally, LVHN is doing things like partnering with the Allentown School District as part of its "Well on your Way" program.
The "Community Canvas" project teaches students about better nutrition through an art competition.
ASD officials say they also partner with community organizations for exercise-oriented events, like the American Heart Association's Jump Rope for Heart.
While pre-schoolers have seen positive results, the study shows no real change in other age groups.
And Hagstrom says Lehigh County's obesity numbers are higher than the study.
But he says if efforts to curb obesity continue on a community level that could change.
"One intervention is probably not going to be enough. It needs to be a comprehensive approach it needs to be a collaborative approach and it's clearly making a difference so we just need to keep going," said Hagstrom.
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