Obese Kids Cost $19,000 More
The price of childhood obesity is steep—and not just when it comes to kids’ health. Over a lifetime, medical costs for an obese child will total $19,000 more than for a normal-weight child, researchers estimate. That calculation, based on data from six studies, compares a hypothetical 10-year-old obese child with a hypothetical normal-weight 10-year-old who maintains normal weight into adulthood. Compared with a normal-weight child who becomes obese later in life, an obese child’s lifetime medical care—factoring in potential future problems such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease—totals $12,660 more. These estimates don’t include obesity’s effect on nonmedical costs or health-related quality of life.
Source: Pediatrics, published online April 7, 2014