Obesity and overweight declined among lower-income kids



The combined rate of obesity and overweight among children in the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) decreased by 3.2% during 2010-2016, according to a study in JAMA.

Liping Pan, MD, MPH, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and colleagues used data from the WIC Participant and Program Characteristics survey from 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016 for 12,403,629 children aged 2-4 years from 50 states, Washington, D.C., and 5 territories. In addition to a –3.2% change (95% confidence interval, –3.3% to –3.2%) in adjusted prevalence difference for the combined rate of obesity and overweight seen between 2010 and 2016, the researchers found the crude prevalence decreased from 32.5% to 29.1%. A decrease was also seen for obesity alone (crude prevalence, 15.9% to 13.9%; adjusted prevalence difference, –1.9%; 95% CI, –1.9% to –1.8%).

One of the limitations of the study is that the characteristics of enrolled children might differ from those of children not enrolled in this WIC program; however, the researchers noted that they accounted for many demographic characteristics in the trend analyses.

“Reasons for the declines in obesity among young children in WIC remain undetermined but may include WIC food package revisions and local, state, and national initiatives,” they wrote.

SOURCE: Pan L et al. JAMA. 2019 Jun 18;321(23):2364-6.

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