A generation ago, students walked to school each day, and recess and P.E. were regular parts of their school days. Children played in the neighborhood or the woods, and they were less distracted by 24-hour cartoon programming and movie-like video games. Vegetables were served and consumed at most meals.
Today, more than 80% of youth report eating less than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. 1 in 3 US children are overweight or obese, compared to 1 in 20 in 1963. While we know little about obesity locally, Illinois ranks ninth out of the 50 states and D.C. for childhood obesity; with 19.3 percent of children 10-17 struggling with obesity in Illinois (according to the 2011 National Survey of Children's Health).
The great news is that we can change this! We can commit to stopping and even reversing the obesity trend through some very simple efforts to help our children, our families, and our communities eat healthier and move more.