Teens are obese due to lack of exercise

The American Council on Exercise (ACE), America's nonprofit fitness advocate, today applauds the recent findings by University of California San Diego School of Medicine and San Diego State University researchers stating that the lack of physical activity was the most significant obesity risk factor contributing to obesity in 11- to 15-year-olds.

Published in this month's "Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine," http://archpedi.ama-assn.org/, the study looked at 878 adolescents from the practices of 45 primary care physicians in six San Diego County clinics.

According to the study, the proportion of overweight adolescents has increased dramatically in recent years, but the behavioral risk factors for overweight youth are not well understood. The objective of the study was to examine how diet, physical activity, and sedentary behaviors relate to overweight status in adolescents. "Daily activities such as walking to school, physical education classes, after-school activities, chores and general playing have been replaced with a sedentary lifestyle in front of the TV, computer, or video games," said Ken Germano, president of the American Council on Exercise. "This study highlights the need for effective physical activity programs targeted at young people.

It is important for us to continually teach our kids to lead healthy and active lives now so they can avoid serious health problems in the future." Established in 1990, Operation FitKids (OFK) is the youth outreach program for the American Council on Exercise. OFK is dedicated to improving the health and fitness of America's youth. OFK provides high quality educational materials and top-notch professional training to educators, fitness professionals, health professionals and parents working in youth fitness. For more information on OFK log onto http://www.acefitness.org/ofk/.

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