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Sandra Yi ReportingAn epidemic of large proportions is affecting not only adults, but children. More kids than ever are, 'tipping the scales' and that has health advocates calling attention to a potentially dangerous epidemic. Nearly 20 percent of our kids are overweight or at risk of becoming overweight.
In Utah, the number grows to one out of every four students in kindergarten to 8th grade. Health experts say, it's mostly an environmental effect.
Julie Metos, Clinical Dietician: "We have a lot more food options and a lot more sedentary lifestyle. And those things are resulting in fluffier kids sooner. And so things that we used to see more in the 40s and 50s, we're now seeing in children in their teens and 20s.
Also, because of budget cuts more schools across the nation are cutting physical education programs when they may be needed most. Health experts also worry kids will be less active in school as academic expections are rising.
So now there are nationwide initiatives to promote health and nutrition among kids.
That was just one topic at an Intermountain Health Care 'Healthy Communities Conference' today. There are many other ways schools in Utah are combatting obesity.
In a special report I'll show you how one program is helping kids stay in shape and learn about nutrition. Find out if it's available in your child's school and get tips on helping your children stay in shape. That's tonight, on Eyewitness News at 10.