A study compiled by Trust for America’s Health revealed that child obesity levels in Arizona rose much higher between 2003 and 2007, than other areas of the United States. Since 1980, the rate of obesity in children has trebled, with one in six children and teenagers being overweight or obese in America.
May is the National Physical Fitness and Sports month, and the 2nd Annual At Bat For Kids HealthFest is to help children of all ages to learn about health and fitness. The charity event will celebrate smart nutrition, health and fitness in order to lead a healthy and active lifestyle. The event which will be held in Arizona, takes place on 14th May 2011, to raise money for Kicks R Us, a non profit charity which started in 2005. Their aim is to give access to free sports and activities to under resourced children. By building self esteem and educating children how to achieve a healthy lifestyle, the organisation hopes to reduce the levels of overweight youngsters.
The event in May will feature a celebrity softball game, a concert which features Jonnie and Brookie, and also a healthy kids expo. According to Christi Wheeler, a clinical paediatric dietician, in contrast to popular belief children don’t grow out of child obesity, and in fact 80 percent of children are likely to stay obese as adults. Children who are overweight or obese are likely to suffer emotional and physical problems, which include depression, sleep apnoea, type 2 diabetes, and anxiety. Almost three quarters of all obese children have one risk factor of heart disease such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure or intolerance to glucose.
Christi Wheeler says that there are ways to avoid child obesity problems which include reducing portion sizes at meal times, serving healthy home made food rather than processed food which encourages bad eating habits later in life. The celebrity event on 14th May will certainly encourage children to stay active and healthy.