October 7, 1997 in Nation/World

Nation’s Kids Get A ‘C’ In Health

Associated Press

The health of the nation’s children has gotten worse in the areas of obesity, physical activity and low birth weight, according to an annual report card issued Monday by a research organization.

The American Health Foundation gave the state of children’s health in America an overall grade of “C” - a slight improvement over last year’s “minus-C.”

The report card reflects health behavior and care regarding the nation’s children, said Dr. Ernst L. Wynder, the organization’s president.

By health behavior, Wynder means how well parents and teachers instill good health habits in children, such as the importance of exercise, dental hygiene and the dangers of drugs and alcohol.

This is the fourth year the foundation has issued its report card.

“We’re doing reasonably well, but we can do better,” Wynder said.

“For example, if you asked how many children brushed their teeth last night, you’d find that many did not …

“That may seem a small item to deal with, but if children begin neglecting their teeth, they are more likely to begin to ignore other health-related things as well.”

© Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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