More Than Half of US Children Will Be Obese: Study

by Raksha Hegde published on -

 Likes  Comments

More than 57 percent of American children and teenagers will be obese by age 35 if current trends in child obesity continue.

According to a new research from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, even children currently at a healthy weight face an increased threat of having obesity as adults.

“Our findings highlight the importance of prevention efforts for all children as they grow up, and of providing early interventions for children with obesity to minimize their risk of serious illness in the future,” said lead author Zachary Ward, a researcher at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The research was published in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Rise in Obesity Alarming

The researchers collected height and weight data of 41,567 children and adults. Using this data, they predicted future obesity trends for a virtual population of 1 million children up to age 19 that were representative of the 2016 U.S. population. Height and weight trends were then projected for a range of years – from childhood to age 35.

Of the children predicted to have obesity as adults, half of them will develop it as children. Children who are struggling with weight will have a tough time avoiding obesity as adults.

Right now in the US, nearly 4.5 million children are obese. 3 out of 4 two-year-olds with obesity will still have obesity at age 35. At age 2, these children have only a 1 in 5 chance of not having obesity at age 35. By the time the children are 5, that chance drops to just 1 in 10.

Push for Healthy Food

The researchers said it was important that US government implement policies and programs to prevent excess weight gain, starting at an early age. “Plenty of cost-effective strategies have been identified that promote healthy foods, beverages, and physical activity within school and community settings,” said senior author Steven Gortmaker, professor of the practice of health sociology at Harvard Chan School.

DMCA.com Protection Status
Last updated -
About the Author

Raksha Hegde is the content director at Organic Facts and helps oversee a team of brilliant, dynamic content writers. She completed her MS in Broadcast Journalism from Boston University, US. A former business news journalist and editor, Raksha followed her passion for wellness to become a certified Yoga teacher and a wellness festival curator. She believes that learning is a life-long process; she did a certificate e-course on “Introduction to Food and Health” in 2019 from Stanford University, US. 

Rate this article
Average rating 0.0 out of 5.0 based on 0 user(s).

Latest Health News:

A female teenager looking sad/depressed/thoughtful looking out of a window

Good Sleep Can Help Teens Cope With Racial Bias

A good night's sleep can have significant benefits for a teen's psyche. Recent research by a Michigan State University team, published in the journal Child…

READ MORE
A young couple going for a run in the park with their pet dog

More Exercise May Not Always Mean Better Heart Health: Research

A recent study published in the Circulation journal revealed that extreme physical exercise can increase the risk of sudden heart attack or cardiovascular risk…

READ MORE
A pregnant woman holding her stomach while sitting

Extreme Heat Can Trigger Preterm Birth, Finds Study

A heatwave can cause more than just discomfort. New research now shows that it can also cause preterm birth. Published in the journal Environment…

READ MORE