In the past 30 years, the obesity rate has tripled among children and adolescents in the United States. According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, approximately one in six American children ages 2 to 19 are obese. The North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics shows that the figure for children ages 2 to 18 in Forsyth County is 32 percent.
To address this problem locally, Brenner Children’s Hospital will hold the third annual Brenner FIT Challenge on Saturday, Sept. 7, at Wake Forest University’s Bridger Field House at BB&T Field.
The event is designed to raise awareness about childhood obesity, encourage physical activity and healthy eating habits and raise funds to benefit the Brenner FIT Program at the children’s hospital, which is part of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.
This year’s Brenner FIT Challenge is a 2.5-mile family fun walk featuring 13 physical and educational challenges that participants can tackle as they follow the course. Entry fees are charged.
The walk will be followed at 11:30 a.m. by the Brenner Bike Race, a series of USA Cycling-recognized criterium races on a flat, 0.7-mile track outside BB&T Field. There is no admission charge to view the races.
Brenner FIT (Families In Training) is one of the nation’s most comprehensive programs for combating childhood obesity. The program is a family-centered, evidence-based approach to weight management, structured on research-proven methods to improve the health of children and their families.
The program is directed by Joseph Skelton, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics, and includes a team of pediatricians, behavioral counselors, dietitians, physical therapists, social workers and exercise specialists.
Complete information about the 2013 Brenner FIT Challenge can be obtaining by visiting www.brennerchildrens.org/Development/Brenner-FIT-Challenge/ or by calling 336-716-7985.
Event sponsors are Wake Forest Baptist Health, BB&T, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, Northwest Pediatrics, Walgreen’s, KPMG, CH Robinson, Blue Rhino, HanesBrands, the Winston-Salem Journal, WGHP-TV, Fairway Advertising and WMAG-FM.