Is Australia beating childhood obesity?
Recent Australian Bureau of Statistics data has shown rates of obesity in children flattened out between 2008 and 2012. This prompted Professor Tim Olds, from the University of South Australia to declare that the war on childhood obesity is being won. But is this really the case?
1 in 4
What the figures reveal is that one in every four children is overweight or obese. This proportion may have plateaued between 2008 and 2012, but consider this: there are now 20% more Australian children suffering from overweight issues today than there were less than 20 years ago.
25% is a big number. What that number tells us is that your child has a 25% chance of becoming overweight, and suffering all the problems because of it.
The problems of childhood obesity
Before we look at the physical problems caused by obesity in children, often overlooked are the mental and social problems. These can start at school, and then follow through to adult life, and may include:
- Social stigma in public places
- Ostracised in sports activities
- Discrimination when job seeking in later life
- Mental health issues and depression
If you think that is bad, then consider the physical health issues on top, which include:
- Joint problems such as osteoarthritis
- Breathing problems, including asthma
- Problems sleeping, including sleep apnoea
- Vitamin and iron deficiency
- Heart and artery disease
Worst of all, it is projected that a third of Australia’s children will be overweight or obese by 2025, and that life expectancies will fall because of the problems this causes. Obesity is already considered to be Australia’s number one health issue, even more damaging than smoking.
Fighting childhood obesity
Given these facts, it is no surprise that parents should want to help their children maintain a healthy weight and diet. The first priority for many, and quite rightly, is to ensure a healthy diet. For most this means packing the diet with foods such as fruit and milk. All such foods contain natural sugars, though, so what is considered a low sugar diet may not be.
Other parents will look toward foods and snacks that claim to be low fat, but in actual fact are packed with added sugars. These sugars manifest themselves in calorific content, and lead to weight gain and tooth decay.
Sugar free drinks are often sweetened with chemically produced non-natural sweeteners, and these introduce their own problems and health issues.
The best way to ensure a great, sweet taste in food and drink, and at the same time maintain a healthy diet low in added sugars and free from the problems that artificial sweeteners cause, is to make sure you use natural sweeteners in your cooking and baking, and buy any soft drinks that also contain natural, rather than artificial, sweeteners.
Direct benefits of using natural sweeteners
They’ll get the kick of sweetness, without the addictive quality of sugar. It is this food addiction that is a primary cause of obesity, and the main reason why food manufacturers have more than doubled their use of added sugars in processed foods and drinks in recent years: the greater your child’s addiction, the more product producers will sell.
By cutting out added sugars and artificial sweeteners, and substituting natural sweeteners in their place, children’s weight issues will improve and the associated mental and physical health issues will decrease accordingly. Using natural sweeteners such as Stevia or Xylitol may be the reason your child doesn’t die before you do.
Why not make the change that could make the difference to your life, and that of your children today? You can buy stevia and xylitol products on line now, and we give a 30-day money back guarantee on everything we sell. It really couldn’t be easier to be healthier.