A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds
the prevalence of obesity remains high in the United States, but the number of young, obese children is going down.
"So, the prevalence remains high, but we've stopped increasing and I think that is an accomplishment for all of the people out there who are trying to reverse childhood obesity," said Cleveland Clinic Pediatrician Dr. Sara Lappe.
CDC researchers looked at trends for childhood and adult obesity among more than 9,000 people. They compared obesity rates from 2003-2004 with rates in 2011-2012.
They found about a third of adults are obese. 17 percent of children and teens are also considered obese, which reflects generally the same number seen in 2004, but Lappe says there is some good news.
"So, in our older kids the numbers are still high," Lappe explained. "We still have the same number of kids that are obese, but in our younger kids, it's starting to go down. It's a good trend."
In fact, the number of obese kids between the ages of 2 and 5 decreased 6% from 2004-2012. Lappe says it's a trend that will continue if parents teach their kids how to live a healthy lifestyle.
"Continue to try to be active, continue to try to eat healthy, eat more fruits and veggies, avoid fast foods, avoid the fried foods, and try to do it together with your family," she advised.
complete findings for this study are in the Journal of the American Medical Association.