A Patchwork of Progress

Changes in Overweight and Obesity Among California 5th, 7th, and 9th Graders, 2005-2010

This study from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and the California Center for Public Health Advocacy (CCPHA) indicates that statewide rates for overweight and obesity in California dropped 1.1 percent between 2005 to 2010. Despite some signs that the 30-year trend of increasing childhood obesity rates may be leveling off, overweight and obesity continue to be of major concern in the state. More than one-third (38%) of 5th-, 7th-, and 9th-grade public school students were overweight or obese in 2010, and more than half of California’s counties experienced increases in rates of overweight and obesity among youths between 2005 and 2010.

“California led the nation in establishing many of the most innovative programs and policies that are improving our children’s changes for a healthier life,” explains CCPHA’s Dr. Harold Goldstein. “Increased awareness and a growing array of school and community policies and programs are beginning to have an impact. But in light of the huge number of counties where childhood obesity rates continue to climb, our efforts must continue and even expand, especially in those areas, where we now know children are most at risk.”