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Childhood Obesity

Since 1980, obesity prevalence among children and adolescents has nearly tripled. According to the data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for 2011–2012, approximately 17% (or 12.5 million) children and youth in the age-group 2 to 19 years are obese. Among adolescents of ages 12 to 19 years, obesity increased from 5.0% to 18.1% during the same period. Data from the national 2013 Youth Behavioral Risk Survey show that 13.7% of high school students nationwide are obese and 16.6% are overweight. The prevalence of obesity is highest for Hispanic male (19%) and black female (16.7%) high school students.

Overweight children are more likely to become overweight adults compared with those of normal weight. Preventable chronic diseases, including type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease risks,

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