Childhood obesity plateauing

By Judy Buttriss

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition, Obesity

Judy Buttriss, director general, British Nutrition Foundation
Judy Buttriss, director general, British Nutrition Foundation
Though still unacceptably high, childhood obesity rates appear to be plateauing, suggesting that the focus on nutrition in schools and other settings is finally starting to pay off. But are we missing a trick?

Some of the worst diets are consumed by teenagers and young adults the next generation of parents. Among females, those aged 1124 have the highest free sugars intakes (15.8% of calorie intake in 1624 year-olds, compared with 10.2% in 50–64 year-olds), the lowest fibre intakes and barely 10% achieve five-a-day.

The inter-generational effects of nutrition during pregnancy are now recognised the nutritional status of young women today may affect the health of their grandchildren.

Not good

The importance of nutrition pre-conception is being emphasised and word is getting out that entering pregnancy obese is not good for mother or child.

Balancing dietary energy density and nutrient density is challenging and young people are considered ‘hard to reach’ with health messages, but there are real opportunities for the food industry to use its skills to innovate and guide young people down a healthier dietary path that is conducive to maintaining a healthy weight and delivering good nutrition.

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