Radical plans to beat the bulge

Worcester News: Radical plans to beat the bulge Radical plans to beat the bulge

CHILDREN would be given free skipping ropes and compulsory cookery classes under a health chief’s radical call to beat the obesity crisis.

Dr Frances Howie, assistant director of public health at NHS Worcestershire, says “we cannot carry on as we are” in attempting to beat the bulge epidemic.

She has outlined a number of ideas to encourage healthier lifestyles including: Asking primary schools to give all children skipping ropes to encourage them to exercise; Making cookery classes in schools compulsory to promote healthier eating; Making sure new buildings come with car parks “three- quarters of a mile away” so workers are forced to walk at least some distance to get in.

 

It was revealed last week that half of Worcestershire’s population is now either overweight or obese.

Dr Howie appeared before a meeting of Worcester City Council’s scrutiny committee to take part in a Q&A with politicians and outline the proposals.

She said: “If we don’t get it right, in the years to come all we’ll end up dealing with is overweight people and those who suffer from alcohol abuse.

“If we do get things right over the next 25 years we will see all those problems pulled back, much more assistive technology and many more people living at home than would otherwise be the case in their later years.

“We need people to take better care of their health so we get rid of lifestyle- related disease, which is the worrying trend emerging from this new generation for the first time.”

During the debate Councillor Roger Berry, the Mayor of Worcester, said the county was “fiddling while Rome burns”.

“There is so much poverty about and society is becoming increasingly unequal – without decent homes and salaries for people, young children have even less chance of being healthy,” he said.

“Cookery classes are all very good, but if you’re stuck in a B&B and homeless, it won’t help.”

Dr Howie said: “Everyone I speak to at the county council understands we can’t go on as we are, so I’m optimistic.

“The link to obesity and poverty is well known. We’ve got to engage a society which thinks cooking is something only chefs do on television.”

Figures show 115,990 people in Worcestershire are obese, including 20,779 five to 14-year-olds.

In April, Worcestershire County Council takes over responsibility for public health

Comments (4)

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11:12am Thu 7 Feb 13

badge73 says...

its not the councils or schools responsibility, its the parents!! drive around the towns at half 8 and see how many kids are being dropped off at the gates. how many kids do you see riding around on bikes now a days?
even when we had the snow there was hardly any kids out sledging like years ago.

years ago obesity in childhood was rare, the kids didnt want to stop indoors .... theres the connection, not rocket science.
its not the councils or schools responsibility, its the parents!! drive around the towns at half 8 and see how many kids are being dropped off at the gates. how many kids do you see riding around on bikes now a days? even when we had the snow there was hardly any kids out sledging like years ago. years ago obesity in childhood was rare, the kids didnt want to stop indoors .... theres the connection, not rocket science. badge73
  • Score: 0

1:29pm Thu 7 Feb 13

batchelorboy says...

Cooking everyday would be cheaper if fresh food was cheaper!

I'm not poor or live in a B&B but I still can't afford to cook fresh meat and veg everyday. Instead I have to try and plan as healthy as I can with whatever is on offer at the supermarket - even then my shopping bill (for just two of us...) is stupidly high. We eat a lot of frozen chips with chicken-based frozen foods.

Not only that, when we do buy the more luxurious foods, they're not even nice! So full of salt and preservatives! We bought a frozen pie which, although on offer, was not exactly cheap. It was crap, the pastry overcooked and the middle was just gravy!

So why bother, we might as well stick to the crap foods which are worse for us but are cheaper and taste better.
Cooking everyday would be cheaper if fresh food was cheaper! I'm not poor or live in a B&B but I still can't afford to cook fresh meat and veg everyday. Instead I have to try and plan as healthy as I can with whatever is on offer at the supermarket - even then my shopping bill (for just two of us...) is stupidly high. We eat a lot of frozen chips with chicken-based frozen foods. Not only that, when we do buy the more luxurious foods, they're not even nice! So full of salt and preservatives! We bought a frozen pie which, although on offer, was not exactly cheap. It was crap, the pastry overcooked and the middle was just gravy! So why bother, we might as well stick to the crap foods which are worse for us but are cheaper and taste better. batchelorboy
  • Score: 0

3:21pm Thu 7 Feb 13

lovelyjubbly says...

How can a frozen pie be luxury food??? Make it yourself. You dont need much meat and it tastes a lot better! Back to story, its the parents who need educating. They are making their kids fat, none else is to blame.
How can a frozen pie be luxury food??? Make it yourself. You dont need much meat and it tastes a lot better! Back to story, its the parents who need educating. They are making their kids fat, none else is to blame. lovelyjubbly
  • Score: 0

2:47pm Fri 8 Feb 13

Arthur Blenkinsop says...

I have to disagree with you batchelor boy. Fresh meat and veg is not only cheaper if you buy the right stuff from the right places, ie. not the supermarkets, but it is also much better tasting (provided you can cook), goes further and is so very much better for you - i feed two of us for a week on about £30 and we eat very well.
Apart from that, kids sit on their backsides all day at school, sit on their backsides all evening in front of the telly or computer and get ferried everywhere by over-protective parents and then they wonder why they are overweight and ill!
I have to disagree with you batchelor boy. Fresh meat and veg is not only cheaper if you buy the right stuff from the right places, ie. not the supermarkets, but it is also much better tasting (provided you can cook), goes further and is so very much better for you - i feed two of us for a week on about £30 and we eat very well. Apart from that, kids sit on their backsides all day at school, sit on their backsides all evening in front of the telly or computer and get ferried everywhere by over-protective parents and then they wonder why they are overweight and ill! Arthur Blenkinsop
  • Score: 0

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