Newsroom

Childhood Obesity: Steps to End the Epidemic

October 4, 2012
by DR. MARK CALLERY
Tulsa Kids

 

Arecent study from the Trust for America's Health estimates that about 2/3 of Oklahomans may be obese by the year 2030. Only Mississippi is expected to fare worse than our state in the battle of the bulge. Eighteen years from now, your little one will be an adult and the lifestyle habits you are teaching today will likely affect their overall health and wellness in 2030.

Since 1980, the number of obese children and adolescents has almost tripled. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 17% of children and adolescents fall into the obese category today.

To determine if a child or adolescent is overweight or obese, physicians calculate their body mass index, or BMI. BMI does not directly measure body fat, but instead, provides a calculation using height and weight to reasonably predict body fat.  Unlike adult formulas, the process for determining pediatric BMI uses age- and sex- specific percentile categories.

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