Childhood Obesity is a problem in the United States and increasing issue in today’s society. “The percentage of overweight children in the United States is growing at an alarming rate, with 1 out of 3 kids now considered overweight or obese” (Kidshealth.org). Primary reasons for childhood obesity is the lack of access to more affordable, healthy foods specifically in lower income communities including within our schools, food pricing, and product formulation, Children that are minorities and socioeconomically with less income tend to be affected more so that children that are not a minority and of a higher income communities. Childhood obesity usually defines a child that’s body mass index is above 95% that are the same age and gender. This is a growing problem with children that are minority and from families that have less income. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and other nutritious foods are not as easily accessible to families with lower income for many reasons. One of those reasons is not having access to supermarkets that may sell healthier foods especially if they live in a rural or urban area. Such areas are often referred to as “food deserts”. These areas generally have little access to foods needed to maintain a healthy diet but have an abundance of fast food restaurants that have less healthy choices for our youth. Without easier access to healthier food choices or easy access to restaurants, contributes dramatically to childhood obesity. This would typically also cause a problem if transportation is limited or if transportation may be available but a further drive to have access to such foods. “Too many Americans live in communities with limited access to supermarkets and grocery stores. Nationwide, USDA estimates that 23.5 million people, including 6.5 million children, live in low-income areas that are more than a mile from a supermarket. Of the 23.5 million, just under half have incomes at or below 200% of the poverty line, and...
References: Centers for Disease Control and Rrevention (online). Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/childhood/problem.html
Institute of Medicine, Food Marketing to Children and Youth: Threat or Opportunity? Washington, DC, National Academies Press; 2005
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Pathways and Partnerships for Childcare Excellence. Available at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ccb/ta/pubs/pathways/pathways_partnerships_v1.pdf [PDF-250k].
Shift the Spotlight to Government Policies, Industry Practices, Sarah E. Samuels 2003
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