It's a common discussion among pediatricians these days: obesity and healthy eating habits.
"And, a lot of kids who are overweight appear relatively normal but they're really not at a healthy rate, their risk for diabetes is higher," says Dr. Mary Beth Robinson, a pediatrician at 12 Corners Pediatrics in Brighton.
When Robinson started her job, she says obesity was not a big topic of discussion among children or their parents.
"I've been doing this 20 years and 20 years ago it was rare to see an obese child and now it's actually quite common."
Today, childhood obesity is one of the top topics in the exam room.
"The overweight category is just exploding. Even active kids now are overweight," says Robinson who uses a number of tools in her office to teach about weight control and healthy lifestyles.
Among the tools many Rochester doctors are using to combat obesity are hand-held circular maps and keys; some measure drinks and how many calories are contained in them while others compare activity and caloric levels to serving sizes. In addition to routine height and weight measurements, pediatricians now measure a child’s BMI or body mass index. The top tool doctors are using: a new formula called "5-2-1-0".
"Five servings of fruits and vegetables everyday, less than two hours of screen time ,which is going to be television, computers, video, all of that,” says Robinson, “at least one hour of active play with heart rate elevated, breathing hard and zero sugary beverages."