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Obesity Rates Among Low Income Kids Slightly Drops

10:54 PM, Aug 6, 2013   |    comments
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BUFFALO, NY --- One in seven low income children in the United States is considered obese.

A recent report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found obesity rates among young children from poor families slightly fell in 19 states, including New York.

From 2008 to 2011, the obesity rate for 2-4 year olds dropped from 14.6 percent to

14.3 percent. While it's not a major change Commissioner of Health Gale Burstein says the shift is important to recognize

"When kids grow up eating healthy they're developing eating behavior and hopefully they continue," Gale Burstein said."If that's what their families are doing, the kids will pick up the habits too."

CDC did not find a particular reason for the drop,but research suggest an increase in breastfeeding and parents educating themselves has helped.

"We're seeing breastfeeding be promoted and culturally acceptable in all communities," Gale Burstein said. " We're seeing acknowledgement that it's important to be active and even childcare centers having more physically active, less screen time in these daycares."

Despite the shift, there's still a recognized obesity problem in Erie County. Recently, a study came out showing more than a third of Western New York students are overweight or obese.

But change takes time and kids who face economic disadvantages are leading the way.

"We need to make structural changes and system changes in our community, to give them access to make the healthy choices," Burstein said.

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