Poverty and Obesity - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/23/06

Poverty and Obesity

Teenagers are so busy these days, so why are we finding an increase in obesity during those active years?

That was the focus of a study that appears in JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association. The study finds that obesity among high school aged kids is higher among the poor. But aside from that, when you consider all teens, researchers found something in common they believe is a significant factor and that is skipping breakfast.

"It could be there's a case of rebound eating here where people who skip breakfast overcompensate in terms of calories later in the day, or it could just be that people who are overweight are skipping breakfast as a dieting strategy, perhaps an ineffective one," said Dr. Richard Miech of Johns Hopkins University.

"Among the kids that come to our obesity clinic, about 70% of the kids skip breakfast," said Dr. Ann Scheimann, a Pediatric Weight Specialist.

Dr. Scheimann also says her patients tell her they skip breakfast to save time, but she says children need to learn that eating a healthy breakfast can help cut down on unhealthy snacking later in the day.

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