City ahead of the game on child obesity
Obesity rates among primary age children in Brighton & Hove continue to be well below the national average, according to new national statistics.
Figures from the National Child Measurement Programme (NCMP) show that at reception age (children aged five) only 6.8% of children in the city are classed as obese.
This is 2.5 percentage points below the national average of 9.3%.
By Year 6 (children aged 11) the gap between Brighton & Hove and the national average is six percentage points (13.8% locally against 19.8% nationally).
Child obesity in the city has fallen every year for the past six years.
Brighton & Hove City Council’s consultant in public health, Dr Katie Cuming, said:
“Our policy of working not just with our schools but also with partners such as Brighton & Hove Food Partnership, Albion in the Community, and Freedom Leisure is still working well.
“We want to prevent obesity happening in the first place, so our focus is on the whole family rather than just the children.
“It’s about helping parents to have the awareness and information they need to make healthy food choices, as well as teaching children in the classroom.
“Our recent SugarSmart campaign has helped children and their parents learn how to spot sugar in our food and to be aware of how much sugar may be hiding in food we think of as being savoury or healthy.
“Our message is simple: making small changes to what you eat and to how much exercise you get can make a big difference to your weight and your overall health, whatever age you are.”
If you are concerned about your child’s weight there are lots of free services across the city that can help. Please contact Family Shape Up on 01273 431703 for further details.