Childhood obesity is a nationwide problem in the United States. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of children and adolescents affected by obesity in the United States has more than tripled since the 1970s. Data from 2015-2016 shows that about 13.7 million children and adolescents are affected, and 1 in 5 adolescents age 12-19 are obese. Obese children have an increased risk of developing a range of health problems, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which are both risk factors for heart disease. Obesity can also cause bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and chronic health conditions such as asthma and type 2 diabetes.
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