Childhood Obesity Prevention
Children should be able to grow up in an environment which enables them to be healthy. In the last 30 years our food environment has changed. Nowadays, there is a lot more processed and packaged foods that are high in sugar, fat, and salt and that are very tasty, relatively cheap and often aggressively marketed. This means that it can be easy to consume more calories than we need and children are now much more at risk of being overweight or obese. Sugary drinks in particular can increase the risk of being overweight or obese.
Changing our food environment and changing the types of food and drinks we consume are key to improving health, especially for children. This means that healthy foods and drinks need to be the convenient, easy and affordable choice.
Everyone has a role to play in helping to create a healthy food environment in the places we live, learn, work and play. To achieve this it will take the collective effort of consumers, schools, pre-schools, businesses, councils, the food industry, food producers, food retailers, government, supermarkets, sports organisations, media and so on.
Toi Te Ora – Public Health Service has developed a briefing paper which describes our role in helping to ensure that every child in the Bay of Plenty and Lakes districts grows up in a food environment which enables them to be a healthy weight throughout their lives. A technical report is also available which provides an analysis of body size of four-year-olds in the population of the Bay Plenty and Lakes District Health Board areas using data from the B4 School Check programme. In addition, Toi Te Ora's Drinks in Schools report is available to view, which gathers a snapshot of the availability of sugary drinks in schools and kura in the Bay of Plenty and Lakes District Health Board areas.
The areas Toi Te Ora is currently focussing on include:
For more information: