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Slow Fight Against Childhood Obesity

tandards. In addition, families need to be sure that meals, snacks and beverages support a healthful diet and are served and eaten in reasonable portion sizes. Families should also make physical activity a priority, " Koplan said.

An expert considers the report to be beneficial, however, feels that a single approach may not undo the obesity epidemic. "With its usual careful and comprehensive methods, the IOM has characterized the state of childhood obesity and control efforts in the United States very accurately," said Dr. David L. Katz, an associate professor of public health and director of the Prevention Research Center at Yale University School of Medicine.
"There is more attention focused on the problem, and more recognition that the dual epidemics of obesity and diabetes in children are a real public-health crisis, Katz said. However, it isn't clear which programs work. What's needed are innovative programs, carefully evaluated to see which are most effective, " he said.

"Moreover, children's daily environment promotes obesity. This makes it impossible for any one approach to solve the problem," Katz said. "Factors that favor obesity assault us daily, from calorie-dense fast food to deceptive advertising, to labor-saving technology. No single factor created the obesity epidemic, and no single program will fix it," he said.
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