PHILADELPHIA - Pennsylvania ranks ninth in the country for childhood obesity, according to a new nationwide report. The report looked at childhood obesity rates state-by-state among kids 10 to 17 years old. Delaware came in at 20th and New Jersey 22nd.
Dr. Emily Gregory, of CHOP Karabots Pediatric Care Center, says it's taking a community effort to address not only diet and exercise but other factors they're finding that combine and contribute to obesity.
"I think sleep is a new one that we're starting to talk a lot about," Dr. Gregory explained. "How much sleep you're getting is going to affect your appetite and your level of stress is going to affect your ability to sleep."
It's a vicious cycle that she says is tough but not impossible to break. It just takes effort to figure out what'll work for your child and yourself.
"It's not the same for everybody and I think that's where it can be challenging," she said.
Dr. Gregory says those childhood habits of eating, exercising, sleeping and coping with stress certainly can follow you for the rest of your life, leading to chronic health problems. Regular studies do help.
"I think it gives us a sense of where we are and how much more work there still is to do," Dr. Greogory said.
If you wish to view the report, please click here.