Saturday, July 21 , 2018, 5:10 am | Overcast 64º

 
 
 
 

Fun and Fit: Combating Childhood Obesity

Athlete and speaker Sarah Stanley will visit Mountain View School this week to encourage students to embrace an active lifestyle

In the past 20 years, obesity has more than doubled worldwide. It now kills more people than being underweight. In other words, more people are dying from eating too much than from starving! In 2010, nearly 45 million children younger than age 5 were overweight.

In 2008, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 18 percent of teens, 25 percent of children ages 6 to 11, and 10 percent of 2- to 5-year-olds were obese — all this from something that is 100 percent preventable!

The complications and consequences of childhood obesity are fairly dire: Pediatric metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions that include elevated blood pressure and insulin levels, body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels that can increase the risk of stroke, diabetes and heart disease. Basically unheard of in children a few years ago, pediatric metabolic syndrome is now routinely diagnosed.

Diabetes was formerly known as “adult-onset diabetes,” but its name was changed to Type 2 diabetes because of the frequency in which it shows up in overweight children. In addition to diabetes, obese children are at increased risk for cancer, and mobility and the ability to perform routine tasks of daily living decrease.

And, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, children who are at or above the 99th percentile for weight are regularly diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, a potentially serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts.

A combination of healthy food, active lifestyles, community information, prevention and early intervention services, and a strong sport and recreation infrastructure are the keys to reversing these alarming statistics that represent real children. To help the children of today, it’s important to take action today.

In an effort to highlight the issue and help show kids how much fun a healthy lifestyle can be, Sarah Stanley will visit Mountain View School’s fourth-graders Friday as a stop on her 600-mile bike ride to San Diego from San Francisco.

Partnering with Kids on Bikes, Stanley is an ultra athlete who is celebrating her birthday by doing this bike ride to encourage kids of all ages to embrace an active life. In 2010, she rode to New York from Washington, D.C., (more than 300 miles) with the same message about combating childhood obesity. “How can the next generation lead us if we don’t set an example today?” she asks.

As part of her chat with the students, Stanley will share some practical, achievable steps they can take (along with their parents) to increase their health, as well as her story about using physical activity during her teen years as a positive outlet. After her talk, Stanley will hop on her bike and be on her way to Los Angeles and San Diego. Click here to follow her bike adventures.

— Identical twins and fitness pros Kymberly Williams-Evans and Alexandra Williams have been in the fitness industry since the first aerobics studio opened on the European continent. They teach, write, edit, emcee and present their programs worldwide on land, sea and airwaves. They co-write Fun and Fit: Q and A with K and A. You can currently find them in action leading classes in Santa Barbara and Goleta. Kymberly is the former faculty minor adviser at UCSB for its fitness instruction degree offered through the Department of Exercise & Sport Studies; Alexandra serves as an instructor and master teacher for the program. Fun and Fit answers real questions from real people, so please send your comments and questions to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through Stripe below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Enter your email
Select your membership level
×

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >