Category Archives: Childhood Obesity

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There’s actually been some good news on obesity in recent years. After years of steady increases, new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data has suggested that rates are beginning to plateau, if not decline slightly. That data, however, looks like it might be masking a troubling trend: A growing socioeconomic disparity in obesity rates, with most prevention gains being made among higher earners. New research in this month’s Pediatrics focuses on childhood obesity rates in Massachusetts. It found that, overall, obesity rates held steady.
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Type 2 diabetes is harder to treat in children ages 10 to 17 than it is in adults, according to one of the first large studies of the disease in younger people. The research also found that diabetes develops more rapidly in this age group. About 700 overweight and obese U.S. children and teens were given three therapies in the study: The oral drug metformin alone; that medicine combined with GlaxoSmithKline's Avandia; and metformin used alone with diet and exercise. All three had high failure rates, according.
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With nearly one-third of American children being overweight or obese, doctors agree that there is an acute need for more effective treatments. In many weight management programs, the dropout rate can be as high as 73 percent, and even in successful programs, the benefits are usually short term.

Although family-based approaches to pediatric obesity are considered the gold standard of treatment, theories of the family and how it functions have not been incorporated into effective interventions, according to a study published in the May issue.

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I've had the opportunity in the past few weeks to talk with advocates and supporters of The Campaign for Healthy Kids. The campaign was created by a partnership between the Save the Children and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to help fight the disturbing statistic that nearly one in three children or adolescents in our country are being classified as overweight or obese. The Campaign for Healthy Kids is working to find the best practices and programs.
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Children who are heavier early in life are at an increased risk of hypertension and cardiometabolic problems later in life, Australian researchers say. Professor Lawrie Beilin of the University of Western Australia in Perth and colleagues tracked 1,186 children from birth to age 14 for weight and blood pressure. The study found the top 32 percent of the children with rapid weight gain from birth to age 14 experienced abnormal blood pressure had increased blood pressure detectable as early as age 3. "By following this group of children.
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