From Frugivore — It’s no secret that obesity is a growing problem in the United States with lack of physical activity being one of the main causes. When we’re younger our activity levels appear to be at its highest, but as we get older and our interests change, the less physically active we seem to become, and according to new research reported by NPR this lack of activity is especially acute among African-American teen girls.

A National Institute of Health study followed girls for 10 years, beginning at age 8 or 9, and found that over time their leisure-time physical activity declined dramatically and even more so for African-American girls. By age 17, half of the black girls followed — compared with a third of white girls — reported that they did no physical activity in their leisure time and experts are concluding that this decline at such a young age could be the reason that about half of African-American women in the U.S. are obese, compared with 30 percent of white women and why African-American women tend to put on weight years before their white counterparts.

Of course the layers to this issue go far deeper than this study suggests.

(Read the rest at Frugivore)

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  • Laina

    In reference to Eboni’s comments, while Black girls are probably not involved in sports as much as white children, I think they take dance classes more often than white girls and are probably in cheer leading in suburban communities at the same rate of white girls. I have been to dance recital where there are many overweight Black girls that are able to dance and keep up with the dance routines just like smaller girls. So the issue in many cases is more often poor diet than lack of exercise. There was a time when food was prepared from scratch, you sat and ate a meal and you did not eat until the next meal. If you were hungry in-between meals, the suggestion was to drink water. Now, there is non-stop eating. If people eat food at home, it is not made from scratch but from a microwaved prepared meal. Even when people have salads, the main attraction is the pint of salad dressing poured on the salad and not the salad. It is a shame to see the difference in how people looked in the 1974 Soul Train line from alldawg’s comments to the young people of today.