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Poll: Lack of Exercise is Top Child Risk

Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 09:18 AM

Inactive lifestyles that have created a generation of couch-potato kids received the top ranking in a new national poll of most-pressing child health concerns.
The annual top 10 list – compiled as part of the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health – found “not enough exercise” received the highest rating among adults asked to identify the biggest problem facing kids in the U.S. today.
For the first time, nearly 4 in 10 adults polled said inactivity poses a greater concern to children than obesity (which placed a close second, with 38 percent) and tobacco use (third, with 34 percent).
"Childhood obesity remains a top concern, and adults know it is certainly linked to lack of exercise," said Dr. Matthew M. Davis, the poll director and a pediatric specialist at the UM Medical School. "The strong perception that lack of exercise is a threat to children's health may reflect effective recent public health messages from programs such as First Lady Michelle Obama's 'Let's Move' campaign.
"But lack of exercise offers many more benefits other than weight loss or preventing obesity – such as better attention and learning in school and improved sense of well-being."
Other child health concerns identified by those polled: drug abuse (33 percent), bullying (29 percent), stress (27 percent), alcohol abuse (23 percent), teen pregnancy (23 percent), Internet safety (22 percent), and child abuse and neglect (20 percent).
The survey involved a nationally representative sample of more than 2,100 randomly selected American adults and carried a margin of error of plus or minus 2-4 percentage points.
Researchers provided the following additional resources for the top 10 child health concerns:
NOT ENOUGH EXERCISE: Let's Move:www.letsmove.gov/
CHILDHOOD OBESITY: www.mottchildren.org/health-library/tn9188
TOBACCO USE: www.cdc.gov/features/BackToSchool
DRUG ABUSE: www.drugfree.org
BULLYING: www.stopbullying.gov
STRESS: www.mottchildren.org/health-library/ug1832
ALCOHOL ABUSE: www.stopalcoholabuse.gov/parents.aspx
TEEN PREGNANCY: /www.thenationalcampaign.org
INTERNET SAFETY: www.internetsafety101.org
CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT: www.nationalparenthelpline.org

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Children's lack of exercise has received the top ranking in a new national poll of kid health concerns.
Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 09:18 AM
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