Obese toddlers a new crisis
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.