The recent Channel 4, Dispatches programme highlighted some worrying statistics that highlight the need to educate our children on healthier lifestyle choices. Nearly 1 in 3 children are obese in the UK!!!
Britain’s men hold the unwanted accolade of the greatest percentage of men that are obese in Europe. Stats clearly show that if you are obese as a child you are more than likely to be obese in adulthood too.
This costs at least 5.1 billion pounds last year and is only ever increasing and adding further costs due to more and more associated illnesses such as Type 2 Diabetes which is purely a lifestyle and diet condition. The NHS is on it’s knees and we are adding to the pressures on a daily basis. In my opinion the NHS won't survive any longer unless we make signifcant changes. We must begin to educate and put simple but effective measures in place.
In David Cameron’s tenure he was looking to address the obese issue head on. However, within the 36 days between his resignation and Theresa May’s publication of the Obese Action Plan some significant changes had occurred.
Why was the day of the Obese Action Plan released the same day as A-Level results were published.? Was this to try to reduce the poor publicity that it would have received on any other day?
Cameron’s mission was to halve England’s rate of Childhood obesity in 10 years which would mean 800,000 fewer obese children between the ages of 2-15 in 2026.
In the released publication it was to ‘significantly reduce’ the obesity levels. What does that mean, far too flakey without any accountability.
Pester power is the ability of children to pressurise their parents into buying them products, especially items advertised in the media. As parents we have all been subjected to the relentless behaviour of our children, almost demanding a certain brand of sweet, chocolate bar or crisps.
In the original proposal there was a conscious decision to reduce ‘pester power’ by removing unhealthy food and drink in prominent locations such as check-outs and end of aisles.
The released plan had no reference to this at all.
40% of our weekly shop is on promotion, double that of any other country in Europe. We all love the special offers and multipack deals of BOGOF, or 2 for £ 3, but these are mainly promoting the unhealthier options.
6 weeks after the Obese Action Plan, 1 of the 4 major Supermarkets offered 48% off of confectionary, crisps and fizzy drinks and just 5% on fruit and vegetables.
Cameron’s Vision was to get individual retailers to take action by ending the promotion of unhealthy foods and to put in place measures to reduce families exposure to adverts for unhealthy foods.
In restaurants they were required to clearly show calorie labelling. All three of these actions was cut from the current action plan.
Cameron stated that we must recognize the increasing amount of exercise children undertake will not in itself solve childhood obesity. The number of calories we burn through physical activity is dwarfed by the amount we can consume through food. Surprise, surprise this statement was removed from the published plan.
As parents we know the battles, the guilt, lack of time and pressure associated with feeding the family. Every food choice we make is either feeding illness or wellness there is no in-between. We need to educate on this as an absolute priority NOW. If we don’t it is evident that you and your children will be paying for it with illnesses in the future.
We need to create wellness, educate families, encourage healthy choices, promote healthy foods and begin to change our mindset around eating. When you start to implement healthy swaps and positive changes your body will thank-you for it. You will have greater energy, far better general health, become ill less often and recover far quicker through your strengthened immune system.
Come along to our 1 hour Family Nutrition workshop on Sunday 6th November. Be empowered with the knowledge of how to fuel and nourish yourself and your family. Become a ‘health’ role model for your children.
Attendees will be given a week’s sample menu and shopping list for a family to implement.
Click the link below to purchase tickets.