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  1. Health and Nutrition News

  2. Jan 31, 2023

Controversial American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Pushes Drugs and Surgery, Not Healthy Foods, for Overweight Children

The American Academy of Pediatrics released new recommendations for treating childhood weight problems that were instantly controversial because of their promotion of weight-loss drugs and bariatric surgery for children. While the guideline mentions nutrition, it does not recommend specific interventions.

Weight problems in childhood often relate to family eating habits, rather than individual problems in a single child. Plant-based nutrition is beneficial for children who are obese and for the entire family. Vegan diets are associated with a lower body mass index and a lower prevalence of obesity in adults and children. People following vegan diets are at a reduced risk of obesity and appropriately planned vegan diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including infancy, childhood, and adolescence.

Learn more about the benefits of a plant-based nutrition for infants, children, and teens.


Hampl SE, Hassink SG, Skinner AC, et al. Clinical practice guideline for the evaluation and treatment of children and adolescents with obesity. Pediatrics. 2023:e2022060640. doi:10.1542/peds.2022-060640.

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