Child Obesity Weighs In On The Queen City
CHARLOTTE, NC - Losing weight is a common New Years resolution, but how young is too young? Some say a new anti-obesity campaign that highlights overweight kids goes too far.
One of the campaign advertisements reads, “Being fat takes the fun out of a being a kid.” These types of graphics have people in the Charlotte area talking.
Karen Horne is a Cotswold Resident. She says childhood obesity is a big problem everywhere, "I lived in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina and it’s something that parents struggle with especially here."
Dr. Thomas Marlowe with the Weight Loss Institute says the problem in the local area is growing, "Overweight represents 1 out of every 3 children and obesity is 1 in 6."
Further, child therapist, Kristen McClure says the Georgia campaign strategy could cause the reverse effect, "Children use the campaign to make fun of kids who are overweight and kids feel more ashamed and guiltier about their bodies and eat more and become more obese."
But it’s not just about what kids are eating that is causing a major problem in North Carolina. Dr. Marlowe says our perception of what’s normal has become unhealthy, "We've acclimated ourselves on the concept that it’s perfectly normal to be 20 or 30 pounds overweight."
Whether or not this new campaign motivates parents or children is still up for discussion. However, either way Dr. Marlowe says it all comes down to just one thing, "Quality of life and length of life- both are jeopardized by childhood obesity."
According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Further, the percentage of children aged 6–11 years in the United States who were obese increased from 7% in 1980 to nearly 20% in 2008.