Blog: Latino Ed Beat

CDC Study Finds Obesity Common Among L.A. Preschoolers

A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that between 2003 and 2011, obesity rates among poor preschool-aged children in Los Angeles rose at one point to a high of 21 percent, according to a story by the Associated Press.

The study found that at the same time obesity rates among children in New York fell from 19 percent to 16 percent.

Sadly, the reason given for the higher rates in Los Angeles is that obesity rates among Mexican-American children are particularly high when compared with other groups, the AP reports.

The study found the obesity rate in LA was initially 17 percent, peaked to 21 percent in 2009, and then dropped to 20 percent.

The AP reported that researchers focused on three- and four-year olds who were enrolled in the WIC government program, which provides food vouchers to low income families. About 85 percent of children in the L.A. study were Hispanic, most of whom were Mexican-American. In New York, just 46 percent of the children studied were Hispanic, including not many Mexican-Americans.

According to the CDC, about 12 percent of all preschool-aged children are obese.