The percentage of American children who are overweight or obese appears to have leveled off after a 25-year increase, according to new figures in a study published last week in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Overall, roughly 32 percent of children were at or above the body-mass index considered overweight, 16 percent were at the obese level or above, and 11 percent were extremely obese, says the study, which was based on in-person measurements of height and weight in 2005 and 2006.
Those levels were roughly the same as in 2003-04, after a steady rise since 1980, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which conducted the study.
The results were based on 8,165 children and youths ages 2 to 19 who participated in nationally representative government health surveys in 2003-04 and 2005-06.
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A version of this article appeared in the June 04, 2008 edition of Education Week