Changes in Socioeconomic, Racial/Ethnic, and Sex Disparities in Childhood Obesity at School Entry in the United States | Health Disparities | JAMA Pediatrics | JAMA Network
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Research Letter
July 2015

Changes in Socioeconomic, Racial/Ethnic, and Sex Disparities in Childhood Obesity at School Entry in the United States

Author Affiliations
  • 1University of Southern California, Los Angeles
  • 2Departments of Pediatrics and Health Policy and Management; University of California, Los Angeles
JAMA Pediatr. 2015;169(7):696-697. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2015.0172

The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data suggest a plateauing of childhood obesity in the United States, with no trend among children younger than 11 years since 1999.1,2 However, studies have challenged this finding and cautioned that the overall static trend masks significant differences across subgroups.3,4 There is not much consensus about whether and how childhood obesity prevalence has changed for various age, sex, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic subgroups.2,4 Available data on 2 nationally representative cohorts of US kindergarten-aged children 12 years apart provide a valuable opportunity to document changes in weight gain and obesity among young children and underlying sex, socioeconomic, and racial/ethnic disparities between 1998 and 2010.

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