Researchers find slight decrease in obesity among young children

Dec. 25, 2012, Los Angeles Times

By Mary MacVean

Obesity may be declining slightly among preschoolers in low-income families, researchers looking at federal data said.

Obesity and extreme obesity in childhood have been associated with other risk factors for heart disease and with premature death. And the condition is likely to continue into adulthood, Dr. Liping Pan of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention wrote. Continue reading

Despite more ‘healthy’ options, little change in fast-food calorie counts

Nov. 29, 2012, HealthDay

By Barbara Bronson Gray

You’d like a salad? Want some fries with that?

A new study shows that providing more menu options on a fast-food menu doesn’t mean the average diner chows down fewer calories.

Researchers found that although there has been a 53 percent increase in the total number of menu offerings over the last 14 years, the average calorie content of foods sold by eight of the major U.S. fast-food chains has not changed much. Continue reading

School adds yoga to physical education curriculum

Dec. 18, 2012, The Bismarck Tribune

Public school yoga instructor Katie Campbell proudly looks out at 23 first-graders as they contain their squirming in a kid-friendly version of the lotus position.

In a voice barely above a whisper, she says into her microphone: “Why look at everyone showing me they’re ready for yoga. A-plus, plus, plus.”

Then the lesson begins with deep breathing and stretches common to many yoga classes. Continue reading

Survey shows parents have difficulty acknowledging child obesity

Dec. 18, 2012, WEKU/NPR Digital Network

By Al Cross and Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues

Many Kentucky parents don’t realize that their children are obese or overweight, or at least aren’t willing to acknowledge it. That is the obvious conclusion to draw from the latest results of the Kentucky Parent Survey, released Tuesday by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. Continue reading

‘Design thinking’ offers new approach to tackling childhood obesity

Dec. 14, 2012, Health Policy Solutions

By Diane Carman

For organizations and individuals working to address the epidemic of childhood obesity, the biggest challenge is to make it fun. Or at the very least to avoid making it humiliating, frustrating, boring, and punitive.

“We need to bring back creativity. Creativity is crucial to solving the obesity crisis,” said Chris Waugh, director and co-founder of the design innovation consultancy IDEO. Waugh spoke Friday at an event called Symposium Unplugged, sponsored by the Colorado Health Foundation. Continue reading

Day care may increase obesity in children, study says

Dec. 18, 2012, Education Week

By Julie Rasicot

Parents whose young children regularly attend day care outside the home apparently have more to worry about than increased exposure to colds or the flu. A new study suggests that attending day care could dramatically increase a child’s chances of becoming obese during childhood. Continue reading

Startups compete to fight childhood obesity

Dec. 13, 2012, CNN Money

By Erika Fry

Ray Newlands calls himself “just a little guy from South Florida.” Kids call him “Short Chef”.  And while those descriptions are physically apt — he’s 5’5” — height is not what Newlands is known (or named) for: He wears shorts while he cooks. And he gets big laughs. Continue reading

Progress is being made in the fight against obesity

A policy brief released earlier this year from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reports that the obesity epidemic has slowed or halted altogether in several countries. Though the progression of the epidemic has decelerated, the overall rate of obesity remains high among both children and adults. Continue reading

A systems approach to childhood obesity prevention

On Dec. 11, at a conference on obesity prevention in New Jersey, Terry Huang, professor and chair of Health Promotion at University of Nebraska Medical Center and senior advisor to the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity (NCCOR) discussed the benefits of using a systems approach to fight childhood obesity. Continue reading