Whittier Street Health Center, a community health center with a mission to serve as a center of excellence that provides high quality and accessible health care and social services that achieve health equity, social justice, and the economic well-being of a diverse patient population, recognizes September as Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and its goal to educate children and their families on how to prevent childhood obesity.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1 in 5 American children has obesity. Compared to children with healthy weight, those who are overweight or obese are at a higher risk for medical issues including asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
Childhood obesity has many contributing factors, including genetics. Living, learning, and playing conditions can sometimes make healthy eating and getting enough physical activity difficult to attain. That said, there are many ways parents can help children by incorporating healthy habits at home, such as adopting healthful eating patterns, encouraging physical exercise, setting consistent bedtime routines, and replacing screen time with family activities.
“In addition to incorporating healthy eating and activity habits, parents should not hesitate to talk to their child’s healthcare provider with concerns about potential health risks associated with excess weight,” said Frederica M. Williams, president and CEO of Whittier Street Health Center.
About Whittier Street Health Center
Whittier Street Health Center is an independently licensed community health care center with a mission of providing high quality, reliable and accessible primary healthcare for diverse populations while promoting wellness and eliminating health and social disparities. A champion of equitable access to high quality, patient-focused care, social justice and economic equity, Whittier Street Health Center is accredited by The Joint Commission (TJC), certified by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a Patient-Centered Medical Home, and recognized by the NCQA for its Behavioral Health Integration. Through its locations in Roxbury and North Dorchester, and its Mobile Health Van program, Whittier Street Health Center serves more than 30,000 patients and 20,000 community outreach visits annually; its ethnically and racially diverse patient base is primarily made up of individuals from Roxbury, Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, the South End and greater Boston. Approximately 28% of Whittier’s patients are uninsured. Whittier Street Health Center provides a comprehensive array of 40 healthcare programs and services designed to meet the primary health care, behavioral health, and social needs of the community. For more information, please visit www.wshc.org as well as Facebook (www.facebook.com/WhittierStreetHealthCenter), Twitter (@Whittier_Boston), or LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/whittier-street-health-center), or call 617-989-3221.