Findings do seem shocking
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 03/08/2013 -- In the United States, parents appear to be failing to see their children's faults, even when they are inherently dangerous to the child's health, according to a new poll.
A mere 15% of parents stated that their children were overweight. The parents could not the children as anywhere from “a little” to “very”, and yet less than one-in-eight seemed to believe so. This comes in direct contrast to the statistics that show that 32% of children are either overweight or obese.
In addition, 20% of children in the survey had parents who worried that the child will become overweight as an adult. At the same time, nearly 69% of American adults are now overweight, including 26% that are classified as obese, and another 6% that are under the 'extremely obese' category.
The result of the recent denial of parents suggests that many underestimate their children's current risks of becoming overweight or obese as they grow. That risk can continue to affect them as adults in their general decision making, says research.
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Harvard School of Public Health, and NPR conducted the survey that asked parents about their children, who spanned in age from two to 17.
"We know that nearly one in three kids in America is overweight or obese, and that's a national emergency," Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, said in a foundation news release.
"Better nutrition and more physical activity can help turn this epidemic around, and parents have a unique role to play. Knowing the risks of obesity and dealing with the issue proactively can improve kids' health now and prevent serious problems down the road," she said.
Assistant Director of the Harvard Opinion Research Program, Gillian SteelFisher, stated in a press release: "People often have a hard time making the connection between national problems and their own families. Tackling these blind spots can be a difficult, even if necessary, element of public education." Steelfisher is also a research scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health's Department of Health Policy Management.
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