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Childhood Obesity Among African American Girls

1907 words - 8 pages

Childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions with the one of largest subpopulations being African American girls. According to the (The American Public Health Association [APHA], 2003) nearly 22 percent of African American girls ages 6-11 years of age are overweight. Childhood obesity is a considerable predictor of obesity in adulthood and can lead to deleterious consequences if left untreated. Improving the health needs of this vulnerable populations needs to be paramount not only for the overall wellbeing of the individual, but to avoid placing additional burden on the health care system. Health promotions such as educational programs focusing on health risk or behaviors are successful in improving health behaviors (Bellows, McMenamin, & Halpin, 2010). The purpose of this paper is to provide an individual health promotion for an 8 year old African American female who is the 95 weight percentile for weight. Guiding change is a key component that a nurse display in order to combat childhood obesity (Berkowitz & Borchard, 2009).
The health promotion will aim to increase physical activity and enhance the individual’s consumption of nutrient dense food based on Healthy People Guidelines 2010, as well as improve the health literacy for the parent and the individual with regards to childhood obesity. It is essential that the nurse, parent, and child have open communication with mutually agreed upon goals (Caprio et al., 2008). The goals set forth by the nurse, parent, and child are that the attendee will participate in at least 60 minutes of sustained aerobic activity 5 days a week for the next 6 months. The attendee will also eat at least one and half cups of fruit and one and half cups of vegetables daily for the next 6 months. Increasing fruits and vegetables in a child’s diet is one method to replace energy-dense, low-nutrient foods that add to excess calorie intake (DeMattia & Denney, 2008). Incorporating the theoretical stages of change into the promotion can facilitate the movement form one level to next with the appropriate support and information.(American Dietetic Association, 2008). This health promotion will include preparation and move into the action phase of change.
An evaluation of both the individual and the guardian will include a baseline assessment of the nutritional and activity requirements for the child. Significant finding to incorporate in the health promotion were that the individual has the support of her twenty seven year old single mother who is a graduate of high school and has just completed medical assistant school. The child’s grandmother provides after school care and is an active member of church. Support system evaluation is an essential factor to the health promotion as family oriented obesity treatment programs achieve the most success for pediatric obesity (Towns & D’Auria, 2009). The individual is in 4th grade and enjoys school, art and dance and was diagnosed with asthma last year. The parent is...

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