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Slow Fight Against Childhood Obesity

evaluate programs and calls for greater leadership in preventing childhood obesity," Dr. Jeffrey P. Koplan, lead author of the paper and vice president for academic health affairs at Emory University's Woodruff Health Sciences Center, said at the press briefing.

"The nation is beginning to grasp the severity of the epidemic," Koplan said. "But despite some encouraging efforts, many of them remain fragmented and small in scale. We are still not doing enough to prevent childhood obesity and the problem is getting worse." "Inconsistent monitoring of programs has hindered experts' ability to identify those that work. "We also observed that many environments do not support healthy behaviors for our children and youth," Koplan said. "In some communities, fruits and vegetables are not readily available, especially for families on limited household budgets. Certain neighborhoods don't offer safe places for children to play," he added.

In addition, public and private spending is not enough to deal with the extent of the problem. "There is need for collective responsibility and actions among all who have a stake in reversing this problem. No single sector of society should bear the responsibility of the problem, and no single sector, acting alone, can effectively halt and reverse it," Koplan said.

The federal, state and local government should provide leadership for creation and evaluation of effective plans and the food industry for development and promotion of healthy products and checking of portion sizes of the products, says the report.
Reliable information to promote healthy lifestyle should be put across by the food industry to the consumers. The report suggests that the food industry can act in collaboration with the public institutions to support childhood obesity-prevention efforts.

"Communities should share their successful programs with others and schools should increase their physical-education requirements and s
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