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Why School Wellness Matters

Sponsor: Dannon Institute

Approximately 17% of children and teens age 6 to 19 are overweight, based on 2005-06 data.

Overweight adolescents have a 70% to 80% chance of remaining overweight and becoming obese adults.

Overweight children are likely to have at least one medical complication, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease or sleep apnea (shallow or interrupted breathing).

Excess weight is more common among certain ethnic groups, including Mexican-American and non-Hispanic black children.

The Body Mass Index (BMI) of students is higher in schools that permit food and beverages in the classroom and hallway, provide foods as reward, and use food-related fundraising.

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics; National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health; Kubik, MY, Lytle, LA, Story, M. Schoolwide food practices are associated with body mass index in middle school students. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2005;159:1111-14.