Breaking News: Obesity Hits America

Ke'Airia Touchstone & Ariel Robinson

What is obesity?

Weight that is higher than what is considered as a healthy weight for a given height which is described as overweight or obese. Body Mass Index, or BMI, is used as a screening tool for overweight or obesity. Body Mass Index is a persons weight in kilograms divided by the square height in meter. BMI is a screening tool, not a diagnostic for body fatness or health.

Example:

  • If your BMI is less than 18.5, it falls within the underweight range.
  • If your BMI is 18.5 to 24.9, it falls within the normal or healthy weight range.
  • If your BMI is 25.0 to 29.9, it falls within the overweight range.
  • If your BMI is 30.0 or higher, it falls within the obese range.
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Long Term Effect

  • Children and teens who are obese, are likely to be obese as adults
  • One study showed children who became obese as early as age 2 were more likely to become obese as adults.
  • Over weight and obesity are associated with increased risk for many types of cancers including: Cancer of the Breast, Esophagus, Colon, Gallbladder, Thyroid, Cervix & Prostate

Prevention

  • Schools play particularly critical roll by establishing a safe and supportive environment with policies and practices that support healthy behavior
  • Healthy life style habits including healthy eating and physical activity can lower the risk of becoming obese
  • The dietary and physical activity behaviors of children and teens are influenced by many sectors of society, including:
  1. Families
  2. Faith based institutions
  3. The media schools
  4. The food and beverage industries
  5. Entertainment industries
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