Obesity Is The Reason Our Youth

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Introduction Childhood obesity has been on a steady incline over the past 30 years and is considered a serious public health concern, especially in elementary school aged children. According to the US Surgeon General, nearly one in three children are overweight or obese (US Department of Human Health & Services, 2014). The American Heart Association (2010) has age and sex specific growth charts that show the calculation of children’s BMI using their height and weight. When children’s weight is well above the average for their height and age they are classified as obese. Children BMI- for age is in the 95th percentile or higher is considered to be obese. Obese children normally consume more energy in the form of food and drinks then they burn off with physical exercise (Kids Health, 2014). Our nation’s obesity epidemic effects are immense: taxpayers, communities, and families spend hundreds of billions of dollars each year in medical costs and attempts to end childhood obesity (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2014). Obesity is the reason our youth is predicted to live shorter lives than our parents and we need to change this. Childhood obesity has long-term harmful effects on a child’s future health. Obese children are more likely to have high blood pressure and high cholesterol which put them more at risk for cardiovascular disease in the future (Center for Disease Control & Prevention, 2014). Childhood obesity can lead to type 2 diabetes, cancer, asthma, joint
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