Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fast Food Restaurants and Schools

In addition to test scores, college acceptance rates and money-laundering superintendents, it looks like we’ll have to add proximity to fast food restaurants as another factor in how we judge our high schools.

Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley and Columbia University culled almost a decade’s worth of body-fat data from ninth-graders in California’s public school system.

The findings?

According to the Los Angeles Times article where I first read about the study, “The presence of [a fast food] outlet within easy walking distance of a high school -- about 530 feet or less -- resulted in a 5.2% increase in the incidence of student obesity compared with the average for California youths.”

To think I walked to the nearby 7-Eleven and microwaved burritos or that we drove to McDonald’s (5.32 miles away) for Big Macs makes me wonder how I ever passed gym with Mr. Fried.

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