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Doctor proposes five steps we can take to help curb child obesity

New guide to understanding why 9 million american kids are overweight and what we can do about it

Prometheus Books


IMAGE: Child Obesity: A Parent's Guide to a Fit, Trim, and Happy Child (Prometheus Books, 2006, ISBN 1-59102-377-7, Paperback: $18) view more

Credit: Prometheus Books, 2006

Weight problems among children have now reached epidemic proportions. And it's no wonder. High-calorie fast foods and soft drinks are everywhere, and they are heavily promoted in many of the 40,000 television commercials that kids watch every year.

In Child Obesity: A Parent's Guide to a Fit, Trim, and Happy Child, nationally recognized expert on child obesity Dr. Goutham Rao uses the latest and best medical evidence available to show you how to help your child avoid or overcome this prevalent and dangerous health problem.

In the first part of his easy-to-read and informative book, Dr. Rao gives you the knowledge you need to understand the scope of the problem. He identifies the five principal culprits for obesity among children: soft drinks ("liquid candy"); fast food; television and video games; the inactivity of youngsters both at school and at play; and the changing patterns of family behavior, which have led to irregular meal times and the over-consumption of "convenience" foods.

In the second half of the book, Dr. Rao carefully explains a rational approach to helping your child achieve or maintain a healthy weight, including the science of changing people's behavior. You will also find several typical stories of overweight children, ranging from a heavy thirteen-month infant boy to a sixteen-year-old obese and self-conscious girl. With the help of their parents these children managed to achieve a healthy weight by following simple, practical advice without resorting to gimmicks or "miracle cures."

Dr. Rao makes it clear that despite all the talk about "low-carb" and other fad diets, there are no magic bullets for treating childhood obesity. But the good news is that armed with the right information and recommendations, parents can reverse this dangerous trend and succeed in helping their children become fit, trim, and happy.

Goutham Rao, M.D. (Pittsburgh, PA), is the clinical director of the Center for Weight Management and Wellness at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and the author of Primary Care Management: Cases and Discussions, among many other publications.


"Finally, straight talk about child obesity without the hype! An accurate appraisal of this epidemic--and what we as parents can do to raise healthy and active children." --Jeff Susman, MD, Professor and Chair, Family Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Editor, Journal of Family Practice

"Child Obesity is full of useful scientific and practical information and is told in a light, easygoing manner. This book will not only help parents of obese children, but is a must-read for all parents who want to create a healthy home environment for their family." --Lynne E. Nield MD, Pediatric Cardiologist, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada

Prometheus Books, 2006
247 pages • ISBN 1-59102-377-7 • Paperback: $18

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