Childhood Obesity: It is NOT Getting Better

A recent study (AC Skinner et al. Pediatrics 2018; 141: e20173459) examined obesity prevalence data in children 2-19 years of age from a nationally representative sample (n=3340).  Specifically, the authors used NHANES data from 1999-2016. Thanks to John Pohl’s twitter feed for pointing out this reference.

PDF Link: Prevalence of Obesity and Severe Obesity in US Children, 1999-2016

This article is packed with data and breaks down obesity in categories: overweight, class I obesity, class II obesity & class III obesity.  It provides data based on gender, age, and ethnicity.

The trend in obesity prevalence is best captured in Figure 1.

Among girls:

  • In 1999-2000: class I obesity noted in 14.6% –>17.8% in 2015-16
  • In 1999-2000: class II obesity noted in 4.0% –>5.2% in 2015-16
  • In 1999-2000: class III obesity noted in 0.9% –>1.8% in 2015-16

Among boys:

  • In 1999-2000: class I obesity noted in 14.7% –>19.1% in 2015-16
  • In 1999-2000: class II obesity noted in 4.1% –>6.7% in 2015-16
  • In 1999-2000: class II obesity noted in 1.0% –>2.0% in 2015-16

My take: This article indicates that the prevalence of childhood obesity in the U.S. is not improving and does not appear to have leveled off as has been suggested by some studies.

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Tanyard Creek Park

 

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