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Tackling childhood obesity at the local level -- IOM report releases Sept. 1

What steps have public officials in your state or community taken to combat childhood obesity? The percentage of American adolescents who are obese has tripled in just 35 years. Local governments play a crucial role by shaping environments that make it either easy or hard for families to find fresh fruits and vegetables, play outdoors, walk, and otherwise eat healthy and be physically active. LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACTIONS TO PREVENT CHILDHOOD OBESITY, a new report from the Institute of Medicine, offers action steps that officials at the regional and community levels can use to help reduce childhood obesity, one of the most serious and expensive health problems facing the nation.

The release of this report provides an opportunity to examine initiatives taking place across the country. The report highlights 10 examples of how local officials have promoted healthier lifestyles in communities ranging from big cities to small towns.

Public Briefing: Members of the committee that wrote the report will be available to discuss their recommendations and take questions at a public briefing starting at 11 a.m. EDT Tuesday, Sept. 1, in the Lecture Room of the National Academy of Sciences building, 2100 C St., N.W., Washington, D.C. Those who cannot attend may listen to a live audio webcast and submit questions through a link that will be available at on Sept. 1.

Participating from the committee that wrote the report:

  • Eduardo J. Sanchez (chair), vice president and chief medical officer, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas
  • Peggy Beltrone, commissioner, Cascade County Commission, Great Falls, Mont.
  • Mary T. Story, professor of epidemiology and community health, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • Adewale Troutman, director, Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness, Louisville, Ky.
  • Antronette (Toni) K. Yancey, professor of health services, School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles


Contact: Christine Stencel
National Academy of Sciences

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