CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL HEALTHCARE NEEDS:
T BY BRENDA L. FIGUEROA, FANNY OCHOA, MICHELE TYLER AND LAUREN AGORATUS, M.A.
There is raised awareness that our nation’s children are facing an obesity epidemic. However, many are not aware that children with special needs are even more likely to be overweight or obese than their typical peers. The latest data from the Lucille Packard Foundation showed that while 30% of children are obese, over 35% of children with special needs are obese.1 Data from the Centers for Disease Control indicates that children with special needs are almost 40% more likely to be obese than their non-disabled peers. Children with mobility limitations and cognitive or learning differences are most at risk.2