After decades of increases, the obesity rate among young, low-income children showed a decline in 19 states, according to information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
The findings, out this month, came from weight and height data collected between 2008 and 2011 from about 11.6 million low-income children ages 2 to 4 who live in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and two U.S. territories. The states and territories participated in a monitoring system called the Pediatric Nutrition Surveillance System.
The obesity rate among preschoolers was stable in 21 states. In three, Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee, obesity rates among young children increased slightly. According to the study, about one in eight children ages 2 to 5 is obese, classified as a body mass index in the largest 5 percent of children of that age and sex. One in five black children and one in six Hispanic children are classified as obese.
A version of this article appeared in the August 21, 2013 edition of Education Week as Child Obesity