Survey calls for more physical education and clearer food labelling to tackle obesity crisis

A new poll has been conducted to coincide with the launch of this week’s annual ‘JanUary’ campaign (formerly National Obesity Awareness Week).

The ComRes poll found that a third of Britons believe more physical education at school and clearer food labelling would be most effective for tackling the obesity crisis.

The poll found 23% of particpants thought a ban on advertising junk food before the 9 pm watershed would work best. A similar percentage thought that loyalty promotions in supermarkets would encourage the purchase of healthy products and be effective in reducing obesity levels.

An additional 21% of those surveyed chose a ban on ‘Buy One Get One Free’ promotions. The same percentage also believed that reduced portion sizes and taxes on products high in salt, sugar and fat would help tackle the issue. 19% of Britons also called for more information from government on healthy food and drink.

Schools in England are required to include PE within their curriculum. However, they are now allowed to set the amount of time they spend doing physical activity after the government target of two hours a week was scrapped in 2012.

Despite a slight decrease in childhood obesity rates in 2014-2015, the problem has since begun to worsen. One in five children are now classed as obese by the time they start primary school.

This week’s campaign led by the National Obesity Forum and Heart Research UK is now calling on Britons to commit to healthy and sustainable New Year’s Resolutions for 2017.

Head of Lifestyle at Heart Research UK, Barbara Dinsdale said,“The scale of the obesity problem in the UK is well known, and puts a strain on public services, particularly the NHS. Ultimately, good habits and good choices are needed to address what is an epidemic. That needs to start in school, as well as in the home.”

Source: JanUary

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