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Child Obesity Rates Higher in Novato and San Rafael Than in Marin

Data from a new study released this week found that 32.4 percent of kids living in San Rafael and 31.7 percent in Novato were considered obese in 2010, while that rate for all of Marin is 24.9 percent.

Children in Marin's two largest cities have a higher rate of child obesity than the county as a whole, according to a new study released earlier this week.

The study, conducted by the California Center for Public Health Advocacy and UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, concluded that 32.4 percent of children living in San Rafael and 31.7 percent of children in Novato in 2010 were considered obese. Those figure stand in slight contrast to Marin County's overall childhood obesity rate of 24.9 percent, according to a November 2011 study from the same group.

The latest study analyzed over 250 cities. The statistics showed discrepancies in many cities based on the location’s wealth. San Rafael and Novato were the only cities in Marin County studied.

The data was compiled using the California Department of Education’s 2010 California Physical Fitness Test results for fifth, seventh and ninth grade students. Rates were reported for incorporated cities with populations of at least 20,000 and with fitness tests reporting of at least 70 percent.

Mill Valley School District students outperformed the state average on the annual fitness test. About 46 percent of Mill Valley fifth graders met all fitness criteria - well above the state's 25.2 percent and 41 percent of local seventh graders, higher than the state average of 32 percent. Marin students also outpaced the state average on the test, with about 41 percent of the county's fifth-graders meeting all fitness criteria and 46 percent of Marin's ninth-graders doing the same. The categories were aerobic capacity, body composition, abdominal strength, trunk extension strength, upper-body strength and flexibility.

California’s overall child obesity rate was 38 percent, however the study found some cities were as low as 11 percent, like in Manhattan Beach, and others climbed up to 53 percent, like Huntington Park.

See the full database of cities here. 

Rico June 14, 2012 at 01:15 AM
The headline, higher in Novato and San Rafael than in Marin ? Whats up with that ? Novato may be a bit different than and far from the rest of Marin, but San Rafael is about as Marin as Marin can get, it is the county seat. Being overweight is the new pandemic, and I guess statistics can be skewed to fit ones own agenda. Perhaps children who walk and bike to school, get out and hike on the mountain, swim and surf in the ocean in their free time are in better shape that children who are driven to school, and when they get home go online to chat on social networking programs, stream videos and play computer games. No doubt that the sedentary lifestyle will make the kids fat
santa September 24, 2012 at 09:21 AM
Raymond does several public appearances a year in Fremont, California at the Cold Stone Creamery operating a Lemonade stand to benefit cancer research. Thanks. www.hcg1234.com
jessica wify October 10, 2012 at 09:06 AM
The rising prevalence of obesity in children and its many adverse health effects it is being recognized as a serious public health concern.The term overweight rather than obese is often used in children as it is less stigmatizing.Thanks. http://www.ipc-athletics.org/how-epr-800-works/

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