Report: Children at Risk for 'Recession Obesity'

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June 4, 2009

With parents relying more and more on low-cost fast food, childhood obesity is likely to increase during the recession, according to a report by the Foundation for Child Development. The report — titled "Anticipating the Impacts of a 2008-2010 Recession" — notes that the rate of overweight children and adolescents has been on an "increasing long-term upward trend since the 1970s." The report concludes that current economic troubles could add cases of "recession obesity" to the already increasing trend of overweight and obese children. This epidemic of obesity in children is serious. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that 1 in 3 American children born in 2000 will develop diabetes, and children under 10 years of age are already developing type 2 diabetes, which is primarily seen in adults — usually not until past the age of 40. The problem of obesity in children is a major concern for another reason: the increased incidence of sleep apnea. A 20-year review of obesity-associated diseases among children aged 6 to 17 conducted by the CDC found a significant increase in hospital discharges for a number of obesity-related medical conditions.