Childhood obesity declines in Colorado WIC program
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recently recognized Colorado and 30 other locations where childhood obesity rates are going down for participants in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Womens, Infants and Children (WIC).
A report from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment shows progress in reducing overweight and obesity among young children who participate in Colorado WIC. Among 2- to 4-year-olds in the program, the percentage who were overweight and obese decreased from 22.9 percent in 2012 to 21.2 percent in 2015, a 7.4 percent relative decline.
Colorado WIC provides healthy food, nutrition education, breastfeeding support and other services to 89,000 low-income women and young children at 100 clinics statewide. The program provides whole grains, fresh produce and healthy drink options to help participants prepare healthy meals and teaches new parents about the importance of helping their children maintain a healthy weight. Nearly one in five Colorado children ages 2 to 4 participate in WIC.
Colorado’s local public health agencies and communities statewide are making obesity prevention in early childhood a priority and implementing healthy weight strategies with messaging that aligns with the WIC Program to promote healthy habits.