Local program fighting childhood obesity, and it's free
Posted on 10/04/2017
Local program fighting childhood obesity, and it's free

Corpus Christi ranks as the 6th city nationwide for obesity, and one  local program is trying to change that.

Kids Get Fit, a free and not-for-profit program coordinated through V Fit Productions, provides a variety of exercises as well as nutrition help for children and their parents. Recently, six doctors from Driscoll Children's Hospital did a study on the program to find how effective it was.

"We needed something in the community, a great program in the community like this to do something about it and to help to not only change the obesity problem itself, but just the way people think about how to approach fitness and nutrition," says Dr. Jon Roberts of Driscoll Children's Hospital. 

The doctors from Driscoll decided to do a three-month-long study. First, they tested children on their, vital signs, blood work, complete metabolic profile, blood sugar levels and measurements of exercise ability (maximal heart rate, maximal oxygen consumption). After 12 weeks, the doctors redid the tests on these same children and found significant improvements.

These improvements were in triglyceride levels, which can increase due to eating more calories than your body needs. The doctors also found improvements in high-density lipoproteins and very low-density lipoproteins, these lipoproteins remove cholesterol from the blood.

After the 12 weeks of the program, there was a maximal attained heart rate with exercise increased, the oxygen pulse was also improved even 12 weeks after the completion of the program. 

Kids Get Fit offer different exercise classes such as Zumba and yoga, there are also nutrition classes and goal setting for the child and their family, this is large in part because "it's a family effort when we're trying to make long term changes," says Aiysha Balbosa, Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine.  

It was clear that the Kids Get Fit program showed effective of physical fitness, lipid profile, and liver function. This program is being used in physical education classes in six Corpus Christi Independent School District schools.

The goal is to have this class available in all CCISD schools, and since the program is free, it is just a matter of wants as oppose to needs for the school. 

A few of the doctors did take this research to the American Academy of Pediatrics Conference in Chicago on September 16, and were surprised by the response about the Kids Get Fit study. Doctors from all over the country found the research interesting and were intrigued that the program is being implemented in the school district.