On Monday I read this report, by James Gallagher, BBC news health editor, on the state of obesity in our children here in the UK.
A questionnaire involving almost 3,000 parents, showed that only four parents thought their child was obese, and that nearly a third of parents surveyed, underestimated their child’s weight problems. When the children’s health were put to the test, a whopping 369 children were found to be obese.
“If parents don’t recognise a child is obese then they’re very unlikely to do anything to help their child move to a more healthy weight.
Prof Russell Viner, from the Institute of Child Health.
The article goes on to state that 20% of British kids are obese, and a further 14% are overweight.
As harrowing as these statistics are, it’s not all doom and gloom. There would seem to be a silver lining as it were. The obesity levels in under 10’s seem to have levelled off over the last decade, as this article shows. However, the 11+ age range levels are still, sadly on the increase.
So how does this effect our children’s health?
Obese children are more likely to experience bullying, low self worth, anxiety, stress and depression. Add to these mental health problems, indigestion, high blood pressure, heart disease, gallstones, arthritis, infertility, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers, such as breast and prostate, and we begin to see a major problem brewing up for future generations.
So what can we do about it?
On the 15th of May 2015 it is #FoodRevolutionDay, a global effort to put food education onto our children’s curriculum. To teach them how to grow, and cook healthy nutritional food, and have fun learning the basic skills needed to provide a healthy life for themselves.
Headed up by the naked chef himself, Jamie Oliver plans to hand over a petition of signatures to the G20 leaders of the world, and as he says in the video, we need you to ‘sign it, and share it’. The petition has only been running a week, and it has already smashed the half million target, but that’s no reason to not sign, let’s show the world leaders how we feel about this issue. On top of that if you visit the website, you can find ways to get involved on the day, register your school, or become an ambassador. You can also find a recipe page with 22 mouthwatering dishes that are so simple to make.