RED BANK, NJ - America's weight gain, particularly in children,  is a health challenge that public and private organizations are mobilizing to address. According to WebMD, Childhood obesity is a serious problem in the United States and putting children and adolescents at risk for poor health.

If you are a concerned parent and wondering how your child is fairing on the issue of weight, you can calculate a Body Mass Index HERE

For children and adolescents aged 2-19 years: The prevalence of obesity was 18.5% and affected about 13.7 million children and adolescents.Obesity prevalence was 13.9% among 2- to 5-year-olds, 18.4% among 6- to 11-year-olds, and 20.6% among 12- to 19-year-olds. 

Sign Up for E-News

At Red Bank Family Medicine, Jenny Champion, MS, RD, offers expert advice on this critical health issue. 

Why is Childhood Obesity Considered a Health Problem? According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, key issues that should be noted are:

  • Children with obesity can be bullied and teased more than their normal weight peers. They are also more likely to suffer from social isolation, depression, and lower self-esteem. The effects of this can last into adulthood.
  • Children with obesity are at higher risk for having other chronic health conditions and diseases, such as asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, and type 2 diabetes.
  • Type 2 diabetes is increasingly being reported among children who are overweight. Onset of diabetes in children can lead to heart disease and kidney failure.
  • Children with obesity also have more risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure and high cholesterol than their normal weight peers. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, almost 60% of children who were overweight had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), and 25% had two or more CVD risk factors.
  • Children with obesity are more likely to have obesity as adults. This can lead to lifelong physical and mental health problems. Adult obesity is associated with a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and many types of cancers.

Red Bank Family Medicine's Jenny Champion, MS, RD, can provide excellent nutritional guidance. Champion, a Registered Dietitian, recently joined Red Bank Family Medicine's practice and is available for appointments.  Says Champion, "Nutrition is a super important part of your life -  in fact nutrition affects everything in your life from mental health to physical health and emotional health. If you have any nutrition issue or question, I'm here to help." Jenny's hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 1PM-6PM. Call Red Bank Family Medicine today at 732-842-3050. The address is 231 Maple Avenue, Red Bank NJ 07701.

Jenny is a Registered Dietitian with a  Masters Degree in Clinical Nutrition from New York University. Jenny has 11 years experience as a Nutritionist and is  passionate about helping others find healing through real-food nutrition and an overall healthy lifestyle. Jenny is a blogger and nutrition writer and has contributed to many media outlets. Jenny lives in Red Bank with her husband and three childre