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Children challenged to get healthy

Posted On Mon, September 20, 2010

A growing number of children are considered overweight or obese. Exceeding one's ideal weight range can bring on a variety of health risks as well as potentially higher health insurance costs.

To help make children more physically active, a number of health initiatives have been launched. Recently, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius along with other notable health figures launched the "Million PALA Challenge" (Presidential Active Lifestyles Award).

The challenge encourages children to exercise 60 minutes a day, five days a week, for six weeks.

Sebelius says this is one way people of all backgrounds can begin engaging in exercise and ending the obesity cycle.

"Nearly one in three American kids is overweight or obese, which puts them at a much greater risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer," says Sebelius. "There are more than 300 million people in America today, and we want every single one of them to live a healthy lifestyle."

Research shows that those who have weight problems as a child tend to carry the condition on into adulthood. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables along with regular exercise can help combat most people's weight problems.

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