Childhood obesity rate: Where does NY rank?

Many Indians are embracing 'westernised' diets with an emphasis on junk food contributing to higher rates of obesity in the country. And the crisis is only going to get worse in the years to come

Many Indians are embracing 'westernised' diets with an emphasis on junk food contributing to higher rates of obesity in the country. And the crisis is only going to get worse in the years to come

MS (25.4%), West Virginia (20.9%) and Kentucky (20.8%) had the highest rates of youth obesity, while Utah (8.7%), Minnesota (9.4%) and Alaska (9.9%) had the lowest rates.

"These differences by race, ethnicity and geography did not happen by chance", said Dr. Richard Besser, president and chief executive of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The data comes from the 2017 and 2018 National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH), along with analysis conducted by the Health Resources and Services Administration's Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

Despite the progress in curbing youth obesity nationwide, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation warned that recent changes to government food assistance could reverse the trend. According to the most recent data, adult obesity rates are at least 35% in nine states, top 30% in 31 states and 25% in 48 states.

Three states had obesity rates statistically significantly higher than the national rate in 2017-18: MS (25.4%), West Virginia (20.9%), and Kentucky (20.8%).

She added that in looking at the rates, there continues to be consistent racial and ethnic disparities.

Severe obesity has hit an all-time high among children in England in their previous year of primary school, a government report has found. Black and Hispanic youth had obesity rates of 22.2% and 19% respectively.

Family income also had a major impact, the findings showed.

Bussel says black and Hispanic children experience obesity at higher rates than their white and Asian counterparts. "The more we understand the barriers to good health, the more we can do to address them".

Obesity can put young people at greater risk for several diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer.

Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should have adequate resources to provide grants to all 50 states to implement multi-sector campaigns to address obesity, the study's researchers advised.

The new report offered a number of recommendations for combating youth obesity. It called on the U.S. Department of Agriculture to scrap proposed changes that would take away food stamps - Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - from millions of recipients.

The foundation credited North Dakota for establishing state policies for early childhood education and schools that serve to prevent obesity, including encouraging breastfeeding, making drinking water available to children, healthy eating guidelines and physical exercise. Almost one-third of children age 4 or younger participate in SNAP in a given month, the report said.

The report also urged the USDA to maintain nutrition standards for school meals that were in effect before December 2018, and current standards for school snacks.

The report also suggested more local flexibility to regulate legislation related to children's health and healthy communities.

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