Kids getting slimmer, grown-ups getting fatter

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

Obesity can lead to many health problems.

Last week, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that the rate of childhood obesity decreased in 19 states. First Lady Michelle Obama swelled with pride, especially because her organization Let’s Move! worked so hard to help it happen. Well, that was great news for kids, but once she hears about the new study from the CDC, I bet the smile is going to fall right off of her face.

According to a study the center published in the American Journal of Public Health this week, more adults are dying due to obesity than previously thought. Uh-oh, that’s not good. Ryan Masters, the leader of the study said, “We expect that obesity will be responsible for [more] deaths in the United States, and perhaps even lead to [shorter lifespans].” Yikes! He continued on to state, “Most [programs] are correct in trying to target [young people] to try and [fend] off this problem in new generations.”

The researchers used data from 1986 to 2006 from over 1,000 adults who completed the National Health Interview Survey, and uncovered some pretty… heavy facts. According to the data from the study, 1 in 5 people – either Caucasian or African-American – die because they are overweight. That’s 3 times more than previous estimates!

“Past research in this area lumped together all Americans, but obesity… and its effect on [life] differ…  based on your race or ethnicity, how old you are, and when you were born,” said Masters. “It’s important for policymakers to understand that different groups experience obesity in different ways.“

Ouch, this is not good news for America. With 1 in 5 obesity-related deaths in the older generation, it looks like the adults might need to put down the french fries and pick up a salad.