Childhood Obesity Rates by Age and Highest Education Level in the Household, 2008

Children living in households with more highly educated adults are less likely than other children to be obese.

Figure 1.18b: Obesity Rates Among Children and Adolescents Ages 2 to 19, by Age and Highest Household Education Level, 2008

Figure 1.18b: Childhood Obesity Rates by Age & Highest Ed Level in Household

Notes & Sources 

Note: “Obesity” is defined as BMI at or above the 95th percentile for children of the same age in months and gender, based on the 2000 CDC Growth Charts for the United States.

Sources: National Center for Health Statistics, 2007–2008; CDC, 2010a; calculations by the authors.

  • Within each household education level, obesity rates are higher for children ages 6 to 11 than for children ages 2 to 5. The frequency of obesity among the children from high school graduate households increases from 14% between the ages of 2 and 5 to 22% between the ages of 6 and 11. The frequency of obesity among the children from four-year college graduate households increases from 6% between the ages of 2 and 5 to 14% between the ages of 6 and 11.
  • Within each education level, obesity rates are either about the same or slightly lower for children ages 12 to 19 than for children ages 6 to 11.