From Your Health Journal…..”A great article today from the Jackson Sun with very informative material from Dr. Joani Jack discussing childhood obesity, who feels excessive amounts of food and lack of exercise are two factors leading to the rise of childhood obesity. Dr. Jack does not feel it is a medical problem, yet a cultural problem. While lack of physical activity is a problem, factors such as children drinking too many sweetened beverages and sitting in front of a TV screen too long contribute to obesity as well. Add to this computers, video games, phones, hand held devices, and dozens of other forms of technology, and we have a very sedentary generation. Small changes to a child’s environment are important, as this generation of children’s life expectancy may be shorter than their parents. Too many children face challenges including heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Please visit the Jackson Sun web site (link provided below) to read the complete article.”
From the article…..
Excessive amounts of food and lack of exercise are two factors leading to the rise of childhood obesity, said Dr. Joani Jack, pediatrician and faculty member of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in Chattanooga and medical director of the Healthy Eating and Living Education program.
“We are faced with something that most generations have never faced,” Jack said, as childhood obesity rates have experienced a gradual and continual increase in the past 10 years.
Jack and Deborah Usry, HEALED’s director of training, met with more than 30 primary care doctors, physicians’ assistants and nurses Friday night and Saturday morning at the Jackson-Madison County General Hospital to provide solutions to help lower childhood obesity rates.
Jack and Usry encouraged medical professionals to include obesity care with regular preventive screenings. Usry said diagnosing a weight problem early can prevent a child from experiencing future health issues, including diabetes and hypertension.
“American kids eat more, eat worse and are less active than ever before,” Jack said. “It’s not a medical problem. It’s really a cultural problem that has medical consequences.”
Jack said the mid-1980s marked the beginning of a dramatic increase in childhood obesity. The southeastern states, including Tennessee, have the highest obesity rates nationwide. According to the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health, 37 percent of Tennessee children are either overweight or obese.
While lack of physical activity is a problem, Usry said factors such as children drinking too many sweetened beverages and sitting in front of a TV screen too long contribute to obesity as well.
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