Today, more than 23 million children and adolescents in the United States—nearly one in three—are obese or overweight, putting them at higher risk for serious, even life-threatening health problems. If this trend is left unabated, the current generation of young people could be the first in U.S. history to live sicker and die younger than their parents.
Across the United States, families are struggling to feed their families healthy meals. Fresh fruits and vegetables are expensive, and many communities do not even have full-service grocery stores that regularly stock fresh produce. In schools, children are eating too much junk and not getting enough exercise. At home they spend most of their time in front of glowing screens and not enough time outside being active, in part because there are too few safe and secure places to play in their neighborhoods. Companies spend millions each year marketing unhealthy foods to children making health and nutrition education all the more challenging.
The Institute of Medicine and other experts agree that improving public policies and changing community environments are the most effective strategies for preventing childhood obesity.
The Campaign for Healthy Kids is rallying behind key policies that states should adopt in order to begin to address the childhood obesity epidemic. Read More.
Childhood obesity rates have reached an unprecedented level. Read More about the epidemic.