Childhood obesity rates falling in the United States


ABILENE, Texas - Childhood obesity, one of the country's leading health problems, has seen a 43 percent drop in the last ten years.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children between the ages of two and five are not gaining as much weight as they used to. From 2003 to 2004, the childhood obesity rate was at 14 percent, dropped to 8 percent from 2012 to 2013.

Dr. Hector Garcia Marrero, a local pediatrician, said there's one thing that parents can do to encourage healthy weight for their children.

"Activity. I mean going outside, have your children play, that's one of the best things you can do and not only play by themselves, but play as a family because the example is what's important," Marrero said.

He also said the the goal isn't necessarily for children to be tiny, but healthy.

"We're not aiming to have all children thin, we're aiming to have proportionate children so it's important that you go to your pediatrician and see that your weight and height are appropriate."

According to the CDC, about 17 percent of youth aged two to 19 are considered obese, and 35 percent of adults are considered obese.