Obesity rates fall for youths nationwide

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Thursday, August 8, 2013 - 9:00am

The national push to improve nutrition for school-aged children continues as we head into a new school year.

Now, statistics show obesity rates are falling even among pre-schoolers in many states.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a decline in states like California, Florida, and Georgia. But for low-income pre-schoolers, even in those states, obesity rates are still an issue.

Health experts say when it comes to young children, it's really all up to the parents to make sure food choices are healthy and their children are active. They say setting a good example is the best way to start.

"Teach them, when you're hungry - eat. When you're no longer hungry - stop eating,” stated Jennifer Meyers, health coach at Anytime Fitness. “I know right now and even when i was growing up, I was told, you need to finish your plate. So now they're loading up their plates and being told to finish their plates even when they are not hungry, so they are eating a lot more than they used to."

Researchers have theories on why some states have seen childhood obesity rates drop, like more breastfeeding moms, fewer sugary drinks, and changes in foods offered by federal nutrition programs for women and children.

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