September 2022 - National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month - University of Houston
Skip to main content

Monthly Health Observance

Each month UH Population Health will feature a “population” highlighted as part of national health observances.

  • September

    National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

    September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, a time when we can learn about ways to prevent obesity and promote physical and mental health in children. The reasons why a child becomes obese are highly complex.

  •  
  • Fast Facts About Childhood Obesity

    • 16.2%

      In 2019-20, 16.2% of youth ages 10 to 17 had obesity, according to the latest National Survey of Children's Health.

    • 22.4%

      During the pandemic, the national rate of obesity among kids ages 2 to 19 increased to 22.4% (2020), up from 19.3% in 2019.

    • $14B

      In the U.S., childhood obesity alone is estimated to cost $14 billion annually in direct health expenses.

Keep Moving

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends children be physically active throughout each day.

60:00

The CDC states that children need 60 minutes or more of physical activity each day. Both sports and unstructured play can help provide aerobic conditioning, muscle-building and bone-strengthening.

running/jogging

jump rope

weight-lifting

basketball

Develop Healthy Eating Habits

A healthy diet can help children get the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development, and help them reach a healthy weight. A healthy diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat or fat-free dairy.
  • fruits

  • vegetables

  • whole grains

  • lean protein

  • low-fat dairy

Adequate Sleep is Critical in Preventing Obesity

Did you know that children 6-12 years old need 9-12 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night and youth 13-18 need 8-10 hours? Too little sleep is associated with obesity partly because inadequate sleep can make us eat more and be less physically active.

child sleeping in bed