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Childhood Obesity

Obesity is a serious health concern for children and adolescents. Results from a National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey using measured heights and weights indicate that an estimated 17% of children and adolescents ages two through 19 years are obese.

Prevalence of Obesity among Children and Adolescents: United States, Trends 1963-1965 through 2007-2008

Obese children and adolescents are at risk for health problems during their youth and as adults. For example, during their youth, obese children and adolescents are more likely to have risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and Type 2 diabetes, than are other children and adolescents.

Parental involvement is the key to getting this epidemic under control. Parents must provide healthy meals and snacks and promote physical activity. Visit Resources for parenting skill topics and more information on school interventions and policy changes.

The Children's Body Mass Index Tool (BMI) for Schools

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides the Children's BMI Tool for Schools. The Children's BMI Tools for Schools is intended for use by school, child care, and other professionals who want to compute BMI by age for a group of up to 2,000 children.

The Tool is a calculator that uses Microsoft Excel to compute percentiles for individual children in a group using height and weight measurements, sex, date of birth, and date of measurement information that you either enter or import.


Childhood Obesity Resources

Page last updated: May 17, 2024