Congratulate New York City on Decreasing Obesity Rates

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Target: New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg

Goal: Congratulate New York City on decreasing their childhood obesity rate by nearly 5.5 percent

For several decades, obesity rates in the United States have been on the rise. In 1980, seven percent of children ages six to eleven were obese. In 2008, that figure rose to nearly 20 percent. However, a recent study from the New York Department of Health and Mental Hygiene showed that the percent of obese children in New York City dropped nearly 5.5 percent. This decrease is the largest recent reduction in childhood obesity to be reported in a large city. Congratulate New York City on lowering its obesity rate.

While it’s impossible to pinpoint the exact cause of this decrease in obesity, the city’s recent efforts to improve public health appear to be making a difference. These efforts include a ban on trans fats in restaurant foods, a requirement to post calorie information on menus, and other efforts at child care centers and schools. Cities that have adopted similar tactics, such as Los Angeles and Philadelphia, have also seen a small decrease in childhood obesity rates.

In New York City, obesity rates are calculated by looking at body mass index information that is collected throughout the school year. The most recent study observed children ages five to fourteen. It included information collected at the beginning of the 2006 school year and was concluded at the end of 2011. It is believed that increasing exercise in schools and offering healthier lunch selections greatly contributed to the decrease in obesity.

Sign the petition below and thank Mayor Michael Bloomberg for implementing policies that improved obesity rates in New York City.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mayor Michael Bloomberg,

Obesity has become an epidemic in the United States, and obesity rates have been on the rise for the past three decades. Many believed that this trend would continue into the foreseeable future and would only pose a greater threat to our nation’s health going forward. However, recently New York City recorded a decrease in childhood obesity rates. This decrease of nearly 5.5 percent is the biggest recent decline in obesity rates that have been displayed by a large city.

I would like to thank you for implementing policies that have improved the childhood obesity rate in New York City. Policies such as banning trans fats in restaurants, providing nutritional information on menus, and removing sugary drinks from schools, have all contributed to this success. The example that New York has set will hopefully encourage other cities to take action and do more to help their children.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Hakan Dahlstrom via Fotopedia

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