A collection of insights from experts about data releases, firsthand accounts about the impact of important policies, and reports from places that have measured a decline in childhood obesity rates.
Updated: October 2018
Deeper Dive: New Youth Obesity Rate Data
The Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau (HRSA MCHB) funds and directs the annual National Survey of Children’s Health, which includes the new national and state-by-state obesity rate data for youth ages 10 to 17. We asked a few questions to Dr. Lydie Lebrun-Harris, a senior social scientist in the Office of Epidemiology and Research at HRSA MCHB about what the new data tell us.
Updated: September 2018
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is the nation’s largest nutrition assistance program, helping feed more than 40 million Americans each month. Learn more about the critical support SNAP provides to families and individuals across the country, including firsthand accounts from program participants in Michigan, Kansas, Alabama, Texas, Washington state and more.
Updated: October 2018
Deeper Dive: Survey of U.S. High School Students
In June 2018, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System about high school students’ health behaviors. We asked Holly Hunt, Chief, CDC’s Healthy Schools, to provide some insight about the latest survey.
She once judged people who were on SNAP. Now it’s helping keep her and her family healthy.
After Kristyn Fayewicz was diagnosed with MS, her work became difficult and then untenable. SNAP enables her to buy healthy food, which helps her better manage her symptoms and sets her daughter up for a strong start in life.
The wonderful reason this program’s bringing food stamps to the farmers market.
The Market Match program in California, and similar programs across the country, enable SNAP participants to purchase more fresh fruits and vegetables from the farmers market.
It’s time to rethink how we view families on food stamps. These programs show why.
Access to SNAP and school meals helps kids in Vermont and across the country succeed both in and out of school.
You may think you know what food insecurity looks like, but you haven’t met this family.
Jillian and Wesley Hollingsworth ended up in a tough situation after their kids were born. SNAP helped them temporarily so they could give their kids a healthy start.
How these Friends are Making Healthy Food Accessible to Texas Families Participating in SNAP
Best friends Beth Keel and Jovanna Lopez reflect on times in their life when they struggled with food insecurity and how SNAP helped Beth after an injury that left her out of work.
How SNAP Supports this Texas Family Following their Military Service
Shayna Horne tells Tiffany Nieto-Gaytan, a local food bank staff member, about her family’s difficult transition out of the military and how the food bank and SNAP have provided crucial support.
How SNAP Helped this Kansas Mom Leave an Abusive Relationship
Kolia Souza and her husband, Brian Johnson, share stories about how SNAP helped them during a challenging time in their lives.
How SNAP Kept this Kansas Family Going After Father Lost his Job
Husband and wife, Tim and Emily Brown, talk about the short period of time they received SNAP benefits after Tim lost his job.
How these Michigan Farmers & Veterans Support Families Participating in SNAP
Fellow veterans and friends Jeremy Huffman and Adam Ingrao talk about transitioning from the military to their roles as farmers and healthy food advocates supporting families who participate in SNAP.
How SNAP Helped this Alabama Mom Graduate College and Give her Daughter a Healthy Start
Dr. Jennifer Wells-Marshall tells her friend and colleague, Helen Jones, about receiving SNAP benefits for a period of time when her daughter was young before going on to get her Ph.D.
How SNAP Enables this Busy Alabama Mom to Provide for her Young Family
Andrika Harmon talks with Kristi Gay, her nurse home visitor, about how SNAP helps her buy healthy food to support her young family while she is working and finishing college.
How SNAP Helps this Michigan Family Access Healthy Food
Sixteen-year-old Max and his mother, Catherine Gage, discuss the important role of SNAP in helping their family get the nutrition they need during a difficult time.
This mom left an abusive relationship and fell into poverty. Here’s how she got out.
Stephanie Land fell into poverty after fleeing an abusive relationship. SNAP helped her finish college and provide for her daughter.
The Time to Invest Is Now
John Auerbach, president and CEO of Trust for America’s Health, comments on the newly released adult obesity rate data, and shares a vision for how to address this complex challenge. He notes that policies and programs that align efforts across sectors can work to prevent and reduce obesity. What needs to be done now is to implement those efforts in more communities, particularly the communities hardest hit by the obesity crisis.
American Indian and Alaska Native Youth
Obesity rates have stabilized among kids in Indian country.
CDC reported a decline in obesity rates among 2- to 4-year old WIC participants from 2010 to 2014.
Anchorage reported a 5.4% decline in the overweight and obesity rates among children in grades K, 1, 3, 5 and 7 from 2004 to 2014.
Cherokee County, South Carolina
Cherokee County reported declines in overweight and obesity rates among students in grades 1 and 3 from 2012 to 2015.
Colorado reported a 7.4% decline among 2- to 4-year-olds enrolled in WIC from 2012 to 2015.
Greater St. Cloud, Minnesota
Greater St. Cloud reported a 24% decline in the obesity rates among children age 12 from 2008 to 2015.
New Mexico reported declines in overweight and obesity rates among kindergartners and third graders from 2010 to 2015.
Philadelphia reported a 6.5% decline in the obesity rate for students in grades K-12 from 2006-07 to 2012-13.
Seminole County, Florida
Seminole Co., reported a 13.7% decline among children in grades 1, 3 and 6 from 2006-07 to 2013-14.
Southern California reported an 8.4% decline in the obesity rates among children and teenagers from 2008 to 2013.
DuPage County, Illinois
DuPage Co., reported a 4.5% decline in the overweight and obesity rates among students in grades K, 6 and 9 from 2011 to 2014.
Lincoln reported an 8.2% decline in the obesity rates among children in grades K-8 from 2010 to 2013.
Mississippi reported an 11.6% decline in the overweight and obesity rates among children in grades K-5 from 2005 to 2013.
Tennessee reported a decline in obesity among students in grades K, 2, 4, 6, 8 and high school from 2007-08 to 2012-13.
California reported a 1.1% decline in obesity among students in grades 5, 7 and 9 from 2005 to 2010.