Childhood obesity target at risk

Around 40 per cent of 10 to 11-year-olds will be obese or overweight by 2030 if trends in childhood obesity continue at their current rate.

LGA analysis has found that 37.5 per cent of this age group could be overweight or obese by the end of the decade, rising to 40.2 per cent by 2040.

New figures published by the National Child Measurement Programme, administered by local councils, show a decrease in children’s obesity levels in England. 

But according to the LGA’s analysis, based on current trajectories no council will halve their childhood obesity prevalence by 2030 – the Government’s target.

Cllr David Fothergill, Chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board said: “These new figures show there is still much to do to encourage healthier eating and habits if we are to avoid the children living with obesity today becoming the adults living with obesity tomorrow. 

“Our analysis already warned the Government was set to miss its target to halve childhood obesity by 2030 without drastic action, and these new figures still show this is likely to be the case, with obesity levels still higher than pre-pandemic levels.

“Councils are working to support children and families to live healthy lives and reduce pressure on other public services, from health visitors supporting new parents to weight management services and subsidised leisure facilities, but more needs to be done, especially to reduce the gap between the most and least deprived.”

The LGA is urging the Government to introduce greater powers for councils to tackle the clustering of existing takeaways and to restrict junk food advertising, to restore funding for weight management programmes and increase investment in council-run physical activity programmes, and to broaden the eligibility for free school meals.


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