Published on 19/02/2013
A new report has been put forward by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges which aims to help tackle the obesity crisis in the UK.
The UK is one of the fattest nations in the world, with a quarter of adults now classed as obese and a third of children leaving primary school overweight. Obesity is estimated to cost the NHS £5.1bn a year.
This figure is set only to increase, and by 2050 it is predicted that 60% of men, 50% of women and 25% of children will be obese.
The report from the Academy of Medial Royal Colleges, called Measuring Up, criticises the present and previous governments for ineffective attempts to tackle the obesity problem.
It put forward a list of recommendations to help break the cycle of "generation after generation falling victim to obesity-related illnesses and death.” These include:
- A ban on advertising foods high in saturated fat, sugar and salt before the watershed time of 9pm
- Increasing the price of sugar drinks by at least 20% with further taxes
- Reducing the number of fast food outlets situated near schools and leisure centres
- Food labels to include calorie information for children £100m budget for interventions like weight-loss surgery
- Health visitors to advise new parents on feeding their children properly
- NHS staff to talk to overweight patients about their eating and exercise habits
- No junk food or vending machines inside hospitals
Professor Terence Stephenson, the chair of the Academy which represents nearly every doctor in the UK, drew parallels with the campaign against smoking. He said:
"If we didn't have things like this we wouldn't have speed limits that save lives, we wouldn't have drink-driving limits that save lives, there's a host of things that society and state does to help us live long, healthy fulfilling lives and we're just suggesting something similar."
However, the Food and Drink Federation, which represents produce manufacturers, says the report adds little to the current debate.
Many private medical insurance policies offer discounted gym memberships to encourage their customers to live a healthy lifestyle.
© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2013Categories: Health