Childhood obesity

Document Sample
Childhood obesity Powered By Docstoc
					Childhood obesity
In Britain, rates of obesity among children have tripled over the last 20 years.
Seventeen percent of 15 year olds are now clinically obese.
New official statistics on children’s spending show that 7-15 year olds spend a
bigger proportion of their weekly money on food than on any other item. Sweets,
snacks and take-aways account for more than one third of young people’s
spending money each week. This is true for both boys and girls. On average,
children between the ages of 7–15 years spend £2.30 a week on sweets, drinks
and snacks. They spend the same amount again on other food products, including
school meals. Out of a typical budget of £13 a week, children spend nearly £5 on

                                             Methodological note
                                             The statistics on children’s
                                             spending come from an Office
                                             for National Statistics survey
                                             whose results were published in
                                             June 2005. The survey used
                                             information from spending
                                             diaries kept by more than 4,000
                                             children. They recorded all
                                             their expenditure over a two
                                             week period, and were paid £5
                                             for their efforts. Data were
                                             collected over the period 2002
                                             to 2004. The survey found that
                                             girls tend to have more
                                             spending money than boys.
                                             Family Spending Report, Office
                                             for National Statistics, 2005
   Vicky Pollard from ‘Little Britain’
         – too close to reality?

Healthy diet
Faced with growing levels of obesity, health experts emphasize the importance of
a balanced, healthy diet. Conscious of this, the education secretary, Ms Ruth
Kelly, announced a plan in 2005 to end the sale of poor-quality meals and snacks
in schools. From September 2006, if the proposals get put into action, schools
will not be allowed to provide ‘junk food’ for their pupils.

Shared By: