Childhood Obesity

DuPage County Health Department's latest publication on Childhood Obesity in DuPage County (PDF) is now available. Additional information on methods, statistics, and references can be found in the supplemental document (coming soon). For more health indicators in DuPage County, visit Impact DuPage.

What the Data Say

The obesity rate continues to hold steady among school-aged youth. In 2018-2019, more than one-in-seven (15.0 percent) kindergarten, sixth and ninth grade public school students in DuPage County had obesity. Additionally, 43.3 percent of students with obesity had an elevated blood pressure reading.

The obesity rate among children aged 2-to-4 years enrolled in DuPage County's Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program (16.9 percent in 2018) continues to exceed the national WIC rate (13.9 percent in 2016), stressing the need for early intervention. WIC is the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for women, infants, and children.

Suggested citation: Childhood Obesity in DuPage County. Wheaton (IL): DuPage County Health Department. July 2021.

What You Can Do

  1. Early Childhood Centers
  2. Schools
  3. Parents
  4. Healthcare Providers
  5. Employers

What Early Childhood Centers Can Do

What Everyone Can Do

Importance of Reducing Childhood Obesity Rates

Reducing obesity rates is critical to improving the health of DuPage County. Obesity during childhood and adolescence may lead to health problems such as:

  • Asthma
  • Diabetes
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Joint problems

In addition, obesity in children and adolescents may be associated with:

  • Behavioral problems
  • Depression
  • Low self-esteem
  • Lower academic achievement
  • Lower quality of life

Children who have obesity are more likely to become adults with obesity. Changes made now will not only affect today's children but will have a positive, compounding effect as those children enter adulthood and have their own families.

Definition of Obesity and Body Mass Index

The term "obesity" refers to bodyweight that's greater than what is considered healthy for a certain height. Obesity is defined as a body mass index (BMI) at or above the 95th percentile for children and teens of the same age and sex. For adults, a BMI of 30.0 and above is obese.

How can you tell if your weight is healthy? Calculate your BMI and then follow up with your doctor for further evaluation if recommended based on the results.

Historic DuPage County Obesity Data

Browse the DuPage County Obesity Surveillance Reports and Supplements.


Alleman, E, et al. (2017). A Collaborative Approach to Childhood Obesity Surveillance From a Local Health Department. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 23(6), e17-e20. DOI: 10.1097/phh00000000000615

The 5-4-3-2-1 Go!® message was created by the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children (CLOCC). 5-4-3-2-1 Go!® is a registered trademark and Copyright © 2004 Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. All rights reserved.

Last Updated: 7/16/2021