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Childhood Obesity — Is My Child at Risk?

One in six children in the U.S. are obese. Children who are obese are at risk for health issues like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Many things can make a child more likely to be obese. The children of lower income parents are more likely to be obese. Home and community also play a big role. Having nearby places to buy healthy foods and safe places to play can help children avoid obesity. However, many children do not have access to these things.

There are simple steps you can take to help your child reduce their risk of childhood obesity.

  • Teach healthy habits
    Stop weight gain with good habits like a healthy diet and exercise. Read the Dietary Guidelines for Americans to see if your child is eating right. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans can help you make sure your child gets enough exercise.
  • Eat smaller meals
    Eating big portions of food can cause weight gain and childhood obesity. Children who are given large portions of food eat more calories without realizing it.
  • Consider breastfeeding
    Only 13% of babies are exclusively breastfed after the end of their first six months. If you have a baby, breastfeeding can help prevent weight gain and obesity when they are older.