The Norman Transcript

Local news

February 3, 2014

Study finds overweight kids more at risk of obesity by 14

NORMAN — Children who are overweight in kindergarten have four times the risk of becoming obese by eighth grade, researchers report.

“Half of childhood obesity occurred among children who had become overweight during the preschool years,” the scientists wrote recently in the New England Journal of Medicine.

And as kids got older, their chances of becoming obese fell.

The researchers set out to track not the prevalence, but the incidence of childhood obesity, about which they said little is known. That is, they wanted to know the rate at which new cases of obesity occurred in children ages 5 to 14 in an effort to get at effective interventions.

“Emerging from the finding that a substantial component of childhood obesity is established by the age of 5 years are questions about how early the trajectory to obesity begins and about the relative roles of early-life home and preschool environments, intrauterine factors and genetic predisposition,” the researchers wrote.

In an accompanying editorial, Steven Gortmaker of the Harvard School of Public Health and Elsie Taveras of Massachusetts General Hospital wrote that the study, released Wednesday, should lead to some ideas about interventions to prevent obesity, with evidence pointing to ideas “that focus on children’s environments and that aim to alter early life systems” as probably the most effective.

The researchers, from Emory University, looked at 7,738 children who went to kindergarten in 1998 and were studied over the years through the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study. The results, they said, were consistent with other national studies.

When they started kindergarten, 12.4 percent of the children were obese; an additional 14.9 percent were overweight. In eighth grade, 20.8 percent were obese, 17 percent overweight.

The annual incidence of obesity decreased from 5.4 percent in kindergarten to 1.7 percent from fifth through eighth grade, the study showed.

They looked at some characteristics of the children who were overweight or obese as well.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local news
  • Former teacher adores ‘Red Rudy’ Impala

    For some, transportation needs to be more than just a boxy vehicle that takes you from place to place. Former Norman High School Spanish language teacher Kelly Adams is one of those. In addition to her daily driver, a big SUV, she also ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Cooler summer comes after dry spring statewide

    August made a gentle entry this year — no triple-digit temperatures or out-of-control wildfires. Instead, a bright sun slowly cleared the clouds and warmed the day back to summer weather after a few days of what had felt like an early ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Inmate health costs rising, forcing prisons to scramble for solutions

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Taxpayers forked over nearly $1 million last year to buy inhalers to treat asthma and emphysema among inmates in state prisons. In the meantime, the state also paid for 530,647 inmate prescriptions....

    August 2, 2014

  • Briarwood Elementary Briarwood, Plaza Towers buildings set to open for school year

    MOORE — Briarwood and Plaza Towers elementary students and teachers will no longer be visitors in the hallways and classrooms of their temporary schools this 2014-2015 school year. Displaced and forced to relocate after the May 2013 ...

    August 2, 2014 2 Photos

  • Newville named new executive director at Noble Chamber

    Daniela Newville worked in Noble several years ago and said her new position as the Noble Chamber of Commerce’s executive director is like coming home. “Coming back to Noble is like coming full circle back home to wonderful, genuine ...

    August 2, 2014

  • Felonies filed

    The following felony charges were filed recently in Cleveland County District Court. Michael Wayne Gilley, 35, assault and battery domestic abuse....

    August 2, 2014

  • August library events announced

    The Noble library, 204 N. 5th St., has announced events for August starting with a Friends of the Library book sale from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. today and from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Sunday....

    August 2, 2014

  • Bicycle Racks Five more bike racks installed downtown

    Public art was installed Thursday along east Main Street in historic downtown Norman. Five colorful art pieces aren’t just for looks. The musical notes, dream catcher, fork and spoon, scissortail flycatcher and a bent arrow also are bike ...

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Water Reclamation Wastewater upgrade under way

    Norman’s $63 million water reclamation facility upgrade is under way. Once known as a sewer plant, the facility’s moniker reflects the current trend in water reuse and treatment that’s crossing the United States....

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Meet the Sooners on Saturday

    Meet the Sooners Day will be Saturday at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. The annual, free event kicks off preseason practice and gives University of Oklahoma fans an opportunity to interact with their favorite players and ...

    August 1, 2014