New study: 32% of kids are overweight


Story Updated: Nov 19, 2009

(WKTV) - It's a growing problem among our nation's youth - obesity has tripled in the past 20-years, and more than 30% of U.S. kids are overweight.

From Utica's Boilermaker Road Race to the local area's Heart-Run and Walk event each year, the Mohawk Valley talks the talk and walks the walk.

But is this enough?

According to a new study - no.

"I think this study validates what we've been seeing all along...that waist of young kids keep expanding," said Dr. Mark Blaker, a local cardiologist.

In the new study, researchers followed 350 kids and they found many of them are overweight and at a much higher risk for cardiovascular disease later in life.

"Right now, we've delayed it," Dr. Blaker said. "A lot of heart disease occurs in 70s and 80s, but I think as we go onward we'll be seeing heart disease in the 40 50 pop."

Dr. Blaker said the younger you take action, the better.

"These are things which can be reversed, can be stopped and cause regression or can get better by reversing your lifestyle," Dr. Blaker said.

It's simple things, like more exercise and a better diet.

Dr. Blaker said that while big events like the Boilermaker are great, it's something we need our young people to practice all year long.

"You need to make sure people are doing this several times a week," he said. "We don't need to have 5,000 people...we need to have 5 people all over the community walking."

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