Special School Helps Teen Combat Childhood Obesity

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Mary Healy, Makayla Smith, Marissa Hamilton and Elizabeth Fedorchalk... News PhotoCalifornia,Child,College Dorm,Exercising,Facial Expression,Friendship,Girls,Healthcare And Medicine,Horizontal,Human Interest,Large,Overweight,People,Sitting,Social Issues,Student,Surprise,USA,Unhealthy LivingPhotographer Collection: Getty Images News 2009 Getty ImagesREEDLEY, CA - OCTOBER 21: (L-R) Mary Healy, Makayla Smith, Marissa Hamilton and Elizabeth Fedorchalk react as a classmate surprises them as they sit in the girls dorm at Wellspring Academy October 21, 2009 in Reedley, California. Struggling with her weight, seventeen year-old Marissa Hamilton enrolled at the Wellspring Academy, a special school that helps teens and college level students lose weight along with academic courses. When Marissa first started her semester at Wellspring she weighed in at 340 pounds and has since dropped over 40 pounds of weight in the first two months of the program. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 percent of children in the US ages 6-19 years are overweight or obese, three times the amount since 1980. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)