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Childhood Obesity Can be Linked to Asthma

May 25, 2016

Obesity across the nation is still a growing epidemic and being obese at a young age has been linked to the onset of asthma in adults. Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the respiratory system. According to a study in the Journal for Nurse Practitioners, both obesity and asthma are considered inflammatory diseases. Excess fatty tissues surrounding the lungs and heart can restrict deep breathing and therefore lead to asthma development. Obesity greatly increases the risk for diabetes, stroke and other diseases later in life. The good news is that there is a growing movement to address and reverse the obesity epidemic. Daily, we see posts and news reports filled with different ways to stay active and be physically healthy. There are social media sites dedicated to clean eating and simple recipes that adults and children would both enjoy. Yet many barriers remain when it comes to ensuring that […]


Children, Stress & Weight Management

May 11, 2016

By Courtney Price Project Manager, New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids-Newark It’s a sad fact that chronic stress in childhood makes children vulnerable to becoming obese adolescents and adults. A study conducted by a Cornell psychologist (and funded in part by The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) found that chronic exposure to such stressors as poverty, congested housing and family dysfunction makes it difficult for children to control their behavior and emotions. The inability to self-regulate can lead to weight gain and obesity. When I meet with teachers and parents in Newark pre-schools to talk about the importance of good nutrition and healthy eating, we discuss the dangers of consuming too much sugar in the form of candy and soda. Sugar consumption is linked to weight gain…and also to stress. How often do we grab a chocolate bar to feel a little better or calm ourselves down? It may feel good […]


Absence of Recess a Setback for New Jersey Children

April 20, 2016

Darrin Anderson, Sr., PhD, MS State Deputy Director, New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids The absence of recess in New Jersey public schools is a disfavor to elementary school children and a major setback in promoting a healthy weight among children. Childhood obesity in our country has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Today, nearly one in four children ages 10-17 in New Jersey are overweight or obese which leads to a plethora of health issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes and other chronic illnesses that have been generally associated with adults. According to the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research, healthcare costs due to childhood obesity are estimated to cost $14 billion per year. As a state, we need to encourage active play among children. Recess represents an unparalleled chance to increase physical activity, improve academic performance and foster social interaction among kids. It’s also an […]


Newark’s citywide fight against childhood obesity

March 21, 2014

Originally published in the Star Ledger on by Dr. Nwando Anyaoku Progress in public health is often surprising and sometimes mysterious. A few weeks ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published the first substantial evidence that obesity rates have fallen over the past decade in children 2 to 5 years old. While the report sliced through some of the pessimism on childhood obesity, it failed to explain why the picture has improved. Some commentators credited first lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign, which was front and center at last week’s Partnership for a Healthier America summit. The conference united public health advocates and food companies in an effort to devise better strategies to fight childhood obesity. It was an important summit because many of America’s inner cities, which shoulder the burden of obesity, have been stymied in crafting an action plan. With the best intentions, they pour […]