In the UK about two-thirds of the population of adults are now overweight or clinically obese. The level of child obesity in Britain has tripled in the past 20 years, and is still rising.
In England alone there are more than 1 million overweight children.
During the last ten years the population of obese children has doubled in six-year-olds and trebled among 15-year-olds. As a result, in the UK, there is an increasing concern about the problem, whilst in Europe, childhood obesity programs are slow to develop.
Apart from the social problems involved with childhood obesity there are main concerns about the increase numbers of people becoming overweight, leading to a growth in major health problems. These include type 2 diabetes, heart disease, certain cancers, stroke, back and joint pain, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, gallstones, fatty liver, infertility, breathlessness, depression, snoring, difficulty sleeping and excessive sweating.
There is a definite correlation between childhood obesity and the fast food industry.
Approximately 90% of a hotdog is fat.
Up to as much as 12 teaspoons of sugar may be present in a 12 oz. fizzy drink.
The recommended maximum amount of daily salt intake for an adult is 6 grams. The daily amount for a child it is a lot less depending on age. A packet of crisps may contain as much as 3 grams, for many children more than the daily maximum recommendation.
Should manufacturers of “low-nutrition” foods be allowed to advertise their products to children? Quite often children follow the bad example set by parents.
Children are also often allowed to spend too much time in front of the computer or television, instead of active play. Sometimes, the typical modern diet that schools and parents provide does not help either. Some children hardly ever eat fresh fruit and vegetables but live entirely on high-fat, high-sugar convenience foods. If an unhealthy diet is one of the main causes of childhood obesity reasons can also be attributed to the increase in sugar in our food.
Encouraging your child to exercise doesn't have to mean an expensive outlay on club fees, equipment and clothing; sometimes the simplest and cheapest options are the best. Just walking can burn up to 175 calories an hour, while swimming, football, hockey, squash and skiing can all burn up around 400 calories an hour. Exercise is even more rewarding if your child learns a new skill at the same time.
Why not get your children to try:
Recent research carried out in the USA found that by convincing student volunteers that they had had a bad experience eating ice cream in the past caused them to be put off eating it again. As thought is the most powerful force in the universe this proves that some of the obesity problems could be solved by application of thought and adopting a different attitude towards fitness and health. Although it is well understood that some cases of obesity are physiological and difficult to remedy, in other cases it really can be mind over matter.