Awareness by the Numbers

Speaking of surveillance, the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR) maintains a Catalogue of Surveillance Systems that provides access to more than 100 available datasets related to childhood obesity research in the United States.

The available information, gathered over the past 10 years, encompasses health behaviors, outcomes, and determinants, along with environmental factors and determinants. Users can search and filter the research by level, racial/ethnic groups, scope, sampling design, key variables, cost, age group, time frame, geocodes, sample size, and more.

The four NCCOR collaborators are the leading funders of childhood obesity research: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. According to NCCOR,

This free online resource helps researchers and practitioners more easily investigate childhood obesity in America by increasing efficiency, effectiveness, and innovation in obesity research.

NCCOR’s most recent annual report is titled “Creating Environments to Grow, Move, & Thrive.” The featured projects include a report on how COVID-19 has impacted child care programs, along with potential solutions and emerging opportunities to better deal with the ongoing crisis. One report covers the difficult question of how better to surveil and measure youth active travel to school, and another identifies programs that promote trial use by the young.

This one sounds essential — “A Toolkit for Evaluating Childhood Healthy Weight Program”:

NCCOR developed this toolkit to help researchers, practitioners, and community programs gain confidence in conducting program evaluations. It reviews key concepts and provides detailed guidance on the core components of effective evaluations. It also features a resource library, with links to guides, databases, research articles, and other public health toolkits.

A report from the CDC suggests that the pandemic worsened the nation’s pediatric obesity rates. The percentage of children and teens with obesity accelerated from 19% before the pandemic to 22% today.

Some oldies but goodies

These are useful posts from Childhood Obesity Awareness Month in recent years:

Awareness Month — Settle in for a Read
Childhood Obesity Awareness Month Retrospective
9 Ways to Avoid Enabling
Passive Enabling and Child Obesity

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “Catalogue of Surveillance Systems,”, undated
Source: “NCCOR’s 2021 Annual Report Looks at Strides Made in Promoting Healthy Environments for Kids,”, 03/22/22
Source: “CDC Study Finds Alarming Increase in Pediatric Obesity Rates 5 Points for Physicians to Understand,”, 01/13/22
Image by Jim Rush/CC BY-SA 2.0

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OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

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