A Frightening Statistic
By Carleton Rivers, RD
Take a moment and think back to when you were a kid. Do you remember having to watch what you ate? Did you have to know whether the items on your plate had too much fat or too many calories? These days, more and more kids have to consider fat percentage, caloric intake and nutritional value as the rate of childhood obesity remains high. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that as of 2010, 17 percent (or 12.5 million) of all children and adolescents in the United States are defined as obese. Research has also shown that out of America’s youth with physical disabilities, a higher percentage of obesity is present. However, this burden does not have to be carried by the children alone. We as parents can help educate our families about creating and maintaining healthy lifestyles while allowing our kids to still be kids. So forget about the scale or counting calories and shift your focus to health! September marks Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, as well as the start of a new school year, which makes this a perfect time to begin incorporating new and healthy routines into your family’s schedule.