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Obesity - A Big Issue

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It's a problem across the nation and right here at home - obesity. 

Now, the fight is being taken to the classroom. 

Whiteside County is implementing a program within two area schools, attempting to instill healthy principals from a young age. 

Obesity in Whiteside county has become a major issue, with 28% of people at or above the obese level. That is 3 points higher than the national average. 

Now, because of those high numbers, county health workers, coupled with the American Caner Society are setting out to instill healthy values in young minds. 

"We know that the rates of obesity are increasing and we know the children of obese adults have a higher risk of being obese," said Marcia Widolff of the Whiteside County Health Department.

Second and third graders at two different parochial schools are going to be taught three ideals over a twelve week program: less screen time, more active playing, and the importance of a healthy diet.

"it will be competition based because we know that works on kids of this age," says Widolff, "Stickers will be used as reinforcement, basically telling us if they had the recommended number of fruits and vegetables, if they stayed under the screen time."

The program will be starting after the holiday break, pending the final approval of the grant from the American Cancer Society.  

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