Thirty years ago most people led lives that kept them healthy. They walked more, ate dinners together as a family, and consumed more whole foods. Over time however, family dinners, healthy foods and active lifestyles have been replaced by fast food restaurants, eating on the go, supermarkets full of processed foods. Plus more families turned to TV and video games for entertainment. According to recent studies, nearly 2/3 of all adults and 1/3 (16 – 33 %) of children are overweight or obese. Changes in lifestyles and eating habits have led to more and more individuals becoming overweight and obese. The American society has become characterized by an environment that promotes a decrease in eating healthy and being active. Sugary drinks, advertisement of less healthy options, lack of daily physical activity in schools, no safe appealing place for children or families to go in their community to get active, limited access to healthy affordable foods and increased portion sizes are all environmental risk factors.
Over the last three decades, the childhood obesity rate for children ages 2-5 and 12-19 has more than doubled, while the obesity rate for children ages 6-11 has tripled. As of 2012, approximately 9 million children over the age of six were considered obese. In Wisconsin alone, over 25% of children are obese. Here's another way to put those statistics into perspective: Badgerland Council serves more than 13,200 girls - using the Wisconsin obesity statistic formula this means over 3300 girls are obese.
Obesity during childhood is a growing epidemic. According to studies completed by the American Medical Association, children who grow up overweight or obese are more likely to become obese as adults. One study found that approximately 80% of children who are overweight by age 10 were reported to be obese as adults at the age of 25. Obesity that begins before the age of 8 is more likely to become severe in adulthood. Childhood Obesity has been proven to lead to increased risk of cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, and Type 2 diabetes.
Girl Scouts of Wisconsin – Badgerland recognizes the need to provide health and wellness programs that will help the girls and their families live a healthier life. Jogging with Juliette is just one of our health and wellness programs aimed at getting girls and families moving together toward wellness!