Editor’s Comment: Child obesity problem needs urgent action

Obese child.
Obese child.

When I was a kid, only a very small minority of my peers were what you would call obese.

How times have changed. Now you don’t have to go far to see youngsters who are worryingly overweight.

This week we reveal that obesity rates for 10-11 -year-olds in Bassetlaw are the highest in the whole of the East Midlands.

This is deeply worrying, and action needs to be taken quickly to reverse this trend.

What’s changed in the last 20 years or so?

When I was a lad, me and my mates used to spend half our time outdoors, running around like loons.

Parents were happy for their children to spend hours at a time playing outside, but these days many youngsters spend too much of their time holed up in their rooms, playing video games.

Diets have also changed considerably in the past couple of decades.

The amount of processed food around has increased massively.

It is cheap, convenient, and readily available.

Fresh food these days is relatively expensive, and I feel for families who are having to survive on very low incomes.

It is difficult to eat healthily and keep the weekly food budget down.

It is clear that there is no quick fix to this problem.

The solution lies in a multi-pronged and joined up approach.

Ultimately, in many cases the parents have to take responsibility for their children’s weight.

A child’s health and wellbeing is the responsibility of the parents, and if their children get dangerously overweight then there should be some sort of intervention.