Did Obesity Really Drop 43% Among Young Children?

by Bettina Elias Siegel on March 18, 2014

Hat tip to Dana Woldow for sharing with me a new Reuters article casting doubt on a recent, much-heralded study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (summarized on TLT) which had found a 43% drop in obesity among children ages 2 to 5 over an eight year period.

According to the obesity experts quoted by Reuters, the JAMA study may have been hampered by a small sample size and could be a statistical fluke.  Specifically, the experts point out that there are no similar studies finding a decrease in obesity among this age group over the same time period and that, to the contrary, other studies find that the rate may have increased.  Moreover, there is no documented evidence of the types of major behavioral changes researchers would expect to see if the 43% decline is valid, such as improved eating or exercise habits among preschoolers.    

You can read the Reuters piece in full here.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Brittany March 18, 2014 at 9:55 am

That’s too big of a jump for me to believe it, even without reading the study details. I wish it was true, though.

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Hanna Saltzman March 20, 2014 at 10:45 am

Thanks for sharing. To be frank, this is what I’ve been thinking all along… Like Brittany said, I wish such a dramatic decrease could be true, though!

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Bettina Elias Siegel March 21, 2014 at 9:53 am

I agree!

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