We hear the term “obesity epidemic” often in the news these days.
Last month, the L.A. Unified School District voted to removed flavored milk from school lunch menus, a move proponents argue will help stem childhood obesity.
In April, the state assembly shelved a proposal to tax sugar-filled drinks. The money would have gone to obesity prevention programs.
And, we’re not strangers to obesity in the San Joaquin Valley. About 40 percent of Fresno County kids ages five to 19 are overweight or obese. And so are their parents. 57 percent of Fresno adults are overweight. In San Joaquin County, the number tops 70 percent.
Victor Ycong of Fresno, is just one of many local teenagers suffering from obesity. But in his case, getting sick changed his life - for the better.
Lauren Whaley is a reporter with the California HealthCare Foundation Center for Health Reporting at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.