Where Northern Nevada Ranks in Obesity - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Where Northern Nevada Ranks in Obesity

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Overall it's bad news. The gravy train…make that sausage, biscuits and gravy train…just keeps rolling. In Nevada, one fourth of adults are obese. But we're not as bad as the rest of the country. At the Washoe County District Health Department, Health Educator Kelli Seals told us, "Nevada in fact is on the list of the states with the lowest obesity rates."

With 24.5% of adult Nevadans categorized as obese, we rank all the way down to 42nd for adult obesity, with only 7 states receiving better numbers than ours (there were some ties among the 50 states).

But while we're lower than average when it comes to the adult obesity rate in Nevada, we're higher than average when it comes to children and their obesity rate. That's bad news...eating patterns are established with the very young. Seals told us, "About 17% overweight, 17% obese. So we see about a third of our kids either overweight or obese here in Washoe County. We get that data from 4th, 7th and 10th graders."

Washoe County's rate for children overweight and obese is higher than the U.S. average. At least it's lower than the state average, where a whopping 37% of school-aged children are overweight or obese. That report came out last year:

School-age children overweight and obese:

-Washoe County: 34.8%

-Nevada: 36.8%

-U.S.: 31.7%

(CDC/Nevada State Health Division 2012 data)

At Washoe County School District headquarters, the staggering numbers don't surprise the nutrition department's Keziah Calmese, who told us, "As a community, it's everything the kids see...at the retail level, at home, at school, from a very young age. From birth actually."

The school district turned pro-active years ago, when they banned sodas, candies and chips. Today, Calmese says, "We're lean meats and low fat dairy products, and there's at least 6 fresh fruits and vegetables offered at the elementary level." Nothing is fried. Nachos get reduced fat cheese sauce. Tortilla chips are stone-ground. Even the chicken nuggets got a remake.

The district's Robin Mansholt told us, "They're lower fat and they're whole grain...the breading is whole grain."

Changing eating habits early, for a lifetime of health.

-written by John Potter

There is a great online resource you can use to bring healthy habits to your family at home, called "Get Healthy Washoe." click below:



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