Survey Examines Parents’ Views on Childhood Obesity
The San Jose Mercury News this week featured a series of articles on childhood obesity that included results from a survey of parents conducted by the Mercury News and the Kaiser Family Foundation. Pennsylvania-based International Communications Research conducted telephone interviews of 1,175 randomly selected adults in the Bay Area between Nov. 11, 2003, and Dec. 22, 2003 -- 292 of whom were parents with children in kindergarten through 12th grade. The survey found that respondents listed lack of exercise and obesity as the fourth-most important problem facing children after drug and alcohol use, poor parenting and low-quality educational systems. When asked to choose the most important health problem facing children, obesity ranked as the top concern, with 17% of respondents choosing it, followed by drug abuse and prevention efforts (San Jose Mercury News/Kaiser Family Foundation survey, March 2004). However, respondents were more likely to say that individuals, not the government or the food industry, are responsible for their weight; nearly 80% oppose a proposal to have schools monitor children's weight, according to the survey. The series includes the following articles:
"An Alarm Over Kids' Weight" (Sevrens Lyons, San Jose Mercury News, 3/7).
"When Weight Turns to Worry" (Sevrens Lyons, San Jose Mercury News, 3/8).
"School Food Under Attack" (Watson, San Jose Mercury News, 3/9).
"Mom's Mission On School Food" (Watson, San Jose Mercury News, 3/10).
The survey is available online. Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the report. This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.