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Obese Third Graders

By: Kelly Barfield
By: Kelly Barfield

Remember back when you were a child in P.C. class? It was a time to have fun and escape the boredom of a classroom, but today P.E. holds much more importance.

P.E. teacher Renee Califf says, "It's our job as a physical educator to instill in kids to be more active, so hopefully as a kid they'll be active and then grow to be an active adult."

Active kids, or those not so active, are the subject of a new report just released by the Georgia Department of Human Resources.

The report shows one in four third graders in Georgia is obese and 43 percent are overweight. These new found statistics have health professionals sweating.

School nurse Deryl Green says, "Childhood obesity, or children that are overweight are associated with many health problems. The most common we see are diabetes, which can last a lifetime, high blood pressure, apnea."

Last year in an attempt to reverse Georgia's obesity epidemic, the state released a comprehensive nutrition and physical activity plan.

School nutrition manager Melba Powell says, "We're required to keep our calories and fats under 30 grams."

If you feel like your children aren't getting enough exercise at school or home, check your local YMCA. Some of them offer special fitness programs for youth.

Fitness director April King says, "We have youth fit classes. We offer those for youth who are between the ages of 8 and 14."

In an effort to open the youth fitness programs to all children, the YMCA does offer scholarships to those in need.


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