Obese tod­dlers a new cri­sis

Balonne Beacon - - LIFE - — Sue Dun­levy

AUS­TRALIA’S obe­sity cri­sis has now hit preschool­ers, with 20 per cent of two-to-four-year-olds now classified as over­weight or obese, a new gov­ern­ment re­port has re­vealed.

To­day’s tod­dlers are twice as likely to be obese (9 per cent) as chil­dren of the same age in 1995 (4 per cent) be­cause the size of our food por­tions has blown out. Pub­lic health groups are call­ing for a tax on sug­ary drinks and re­stric­tions on ad­ver­tis­ing junk food to chil­dren to try to con­trol the prob­lem.

Over­weight and obese kids are more likely to be­come obese adults, and to de­velop chronic con­di­tions at younger ages, such as car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease and type 2 di­a­betes.

Aus­tralia now has the fifth-high­est obe­sity rate in the world at 28 per cent of the pop­u­la­tion, be­hind the US (38 per cent), Mex­ico (33 per cent), New Zealand (32 per cent) and Hun­gary (30 per cent).

And the rea­son we’re get­ting fat­ter is the por­tion sizes of the food we eat is get­ting big­ger and we’re ex­er­cis­ing less.

There has been a

66 per cent rise in kilo­joules in the av­er­age por­tion of com­mon foods, such as pizza, cake, sausages, ce­real bars, pro­cessed meats, ice cream and in wine.

PHOTO: IS­TOCK

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