Social media may help fight childhood obesity

Updated:Dec 3,2012

An American Heart Association scientific statement says social media may be an effective tool to help children overcome obesity.

Experts evaluated Internet-based programs designed to help children lose weight, increase physical activity and improve eating habits. They found that children were more likely to lose weight if they interacted online with counselors and peers, their families were involved and they logged into the program often. 

Because many children and adolescents are already active in social media, the expert panel said it may be an effective tool to reach overweight children and may provide a source of positive peer pressure to encourage them to make healthier choices.

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