America’s childhood obesity epidemic is affecting even younger children

Public health campaigns aimed at curbing childhood obesity aren’t stopping the problem. In fact, it’s getting worse.

• The share of American children between 2 and 19 years old who are obese grew from 14% in 1999 to 18.5% in 2016.

• There was also a significant jump in obesity among the youngest group of children, aged 2 to 5 years old, with 14% of that age group now considered obese.

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That’s according to a recently published study in the journal Pediatrics. The researchers, who studied data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Health and Nutrition Examination survey, found there had been no progress in stopping childhood obesity, despite campaigns like former First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” initiative.

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