Roberts Unveils County’s Childhood Obesity Plan


January 24, 2006

SAN DIEGO - County Supervisor Ron Roberts and a distinguished group of health, nutrition and fitness experts today unveiled a comprehensive action plan aimed at reducing the rate of childhood obesity in San Diego County.

"Television, video games and computers certainly have their place, but they are helping to produce a growing population of children who have become far too inactive,” said Roberts, who released the plan with Supervisor Pam Slater-Price at a press conference outside the County Administration Center.

Continued Roberts: “This lack of physical activity, coupled with poor eating habits, is threatening the short-term and long-term health of our kids.”

The numbers support Roberts’ claim. According to the American Obesity Association, 30.3 percent of all children ages 6-11 are overweight and 15.3 percent are obese. For adolescents ages 12-19, 30.4 percent are overweight and 15.5 are obese.

Futhermore, a recent report from the National Institute on Aging projects that the U.S. could be facing its first sustained drop in life expectancy in the modern era due to the increasing rates of obesity among the current generation of children and young adults.

The Action Plan, which was funded by the County of San Diego, focuses on several areas. Among them: increasing access to walking and cycling paths, and making them wider and safer; adopting standards for cafeterias, other food outlets, vending machines and school stores that meet USDA Dietary Guidelines; developing family-centered, multi-disciplinary curriculum on childhood obesity for parents; and providing all students with physical activity during the school day to give children have at least 60 minutes per day of vigorous physical activity.

“This is a common sense plan that will help our kids lead active healthy lives,” said Roberts. “I am confident that it will move our kids off the sofa and on the path to a much healthier future."

To view the plan, please click the image below.