November 10. 2007
LOS ANGELES More children than ever are obese in Los Angeles County and the poorest kids are at the greatest risk, a new report said.
The report looked at obesity rates in 128 cities and communities in 2005, the last year for which figures were available. It concluded that 23 percent of students in the fifth, seventh and ninth grades were obese.
"There is a clear correlation between living in areas with limited access to park and recreational facilities," said Dr. Jonathan E. Fielding, the county's public health officer. "The kids in the poorer neighborhoods often eat chips and soda instead of fruits and vegetables, in part, because it's cheaper per calorie."
The lowest obesity rate was 4 percent in Manhattan Beach and the highest was 37.4 percent in Maywood. Los Angeles averaged 25.4 percent.