As we have reported previously childhood obesity is on the rise in the UK
Due to this a range of associated conditions are emerging amongst our school children. The risk of type 2 diabetes grows significantly when someone is obese. Today Birmingham Live have reported a Child Type 2 Diabetes epidemic has sprung up in Birmingham requiring urgent action.
Across England as a whole, there have been 12,465 hospitalisations of children and young adults due to Type 2 diabetes since 2013/14
“Type 2 diabetes is a serious condition that can lead to potentially life-changing complications. These include sight loss, amputation, stroke and cardiovascular disease, to name a few.” Said Douglas Twenefour, Deputy Head of Care at Diabetes UK.
“Urgent action is needed to stem the rise of childhood obesity.
“Diabetes UK is calling on the government to follow through with its Childhood Obesity plan by banning junk food advertising on TV to children before 9pm, and by restricting supermarket price promotions on unhealthy foods.”
Twenefour’s sentiment was mirrored by the APPG on a Fit and Healthy Childhood who released a report insisting that policy should be in place to stop marketing junk food to kids.
Amongst their suggestions of watersheds for marketing, colourful and fun characters in junk food promotions need to be reined in. Unsurprisingly the multi billion junk food industry has not particularly embraced the voluntary aspects of the recommended changes so Its unlikely much will change on this front in the near future. “Working with the industry on marketing simply doesn’t work ” said the author of the APPG’s report who noted that junk food companies just choose to ignore the guidelines and unless they are mandatory they will remain disregarded by the majority of junk food brands.
Sport England recently undertook a survey which showed 2.3 million children do less than 30 minutes of exercise a day.
Amidst the backdrop of the Childhood Diabetes breakout the Sun reported today that Uber Eats and McDonalds have broken their commitment to never deliver fast food to schools. They have an exclusive relationship whereby Uber has the contract to deliver for McDonald’s in the UK as long as they avoid delivery to school locations in line with the anti-obesity ban. The Sun were able to order a MacDonald’s to be delivered to multiple schools from London to Glasgow.
The National Association of Head Teachers explained that “this is undermining everything we are trying to do on childhood obesity”
If it’s going to be an uphill struggle to get our kids to eat less junk food and they already aren’t exercising enough then it’s easy to see why the Daily Mile and classroom standing desk initiatives are growing in popularity. The UK education sector has decided to tackle childhood obesity at ground level and implement a healthy culture into children’s lives now.
Kids need to learn what is it to be active and how to take ownership of their own healthy status according to The National Association of Physical Literacy.
Standing Desk classrooms are healthier more productive work-spaces. If you think your school could benefit from an Eiger Student Standing Desk Trial then click here to request a trial.
Is it time to implement the Healthy Schools rating scheme promised to us back in 2016. Jamie Oliver has been petitioning government officials to make this happen.Back in December last year he showed us what a healthy school looks like in his television show Friday Night Feast.
If you saw the show or want to get involved, tweet Secretary of State for Education, Damian Hinds: “.@DamianHinds, our schools want a Healthy Schools Rating Scheme to celebrate what they’re doing to keep kids healthy #healthyschools”
What do you think about the news above? Should the Healthy Schools rating scheme be fast tracked? Should MacDonald’s face some sort of repercussions? Leave a comment below.