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New Study Finds Racial Disparities In Childhood Obesity

Audio

Aired 8/18/10

A new study from UC San Francisco finds childhood obesity rates in California have leveled off for Latino children, but are on the rise for African-American kids. Experts believe the environment has a lot to do with it.

— A new study from UC San Francisco finds childhood obesity rates in California have leveled off for Latino children, but are on the rise for African-American kids. Experts believe the environment has a lot to do with it.

The study reveals childhood obesity rates have either stabilized or declined for whites, Asians, and Latinos in California. Rates are still on the upswing for African-American and American Indian girls.

Cheryl Moder directs the San Diego County Childhood Obesity Initiative. She says some local neighborhoods just aren't conducive to good health.

"These neighborhoods have a higher density of fast food restaurants, for example, few places to buy affordable produce, and public safety issues that make parents unwilling to let their children go outdoors to play," Moder says.

The study shows the rate of severely obese children in California hasn't tapered off. Doctors say these kids face big health risks.

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