Next stage of childhood obesity plan

Public Health England (PHE) announces plans to consider the evidence, set guidelines and closely monitor progress on calorie reduction.

burger-987255_1920

One year on from the publication of the childhood obesity plan, Public Health England has announced it will consider the evidence on children’s calorie consumption and set the ambition for the calorie reduction programme to remove excess calories from the foods children consume the most.  Ready meals, pizzas, burgers, savoury snacks and sandwiches are the kinds of foods likely to be included in the programme.

In addition, the Department of Health has announced £5 million of funding for a new Obesity Policy Research Unit to provide resources for long term research into childhood obesity.  Also, the Obesity Health Alliance has published a report card assessing progress during the first year of the childhood obesity plan.

 

Weight management services – why are they important?

Obesity is caused by a complex set of personal, social and environmental factors. It can come with a number of associated health consequences, all of which can have a huge impact on the individual, as well as the people around them | Public Health Matters Blog

scale-403585_960_720

But what impact does obesity have on our local population as a whole, and what part can local services play in addressing this issue?

PHE’s ‘Guide to Delivering and Commissioning Tier 2 Adult Weight Management Services’ supports local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and providers to develop and deliver weight management services that can help individuals achieve a healthier weight, while potentially contributing towards healthier communities.

Our guide, co-badged by NICE, LGA, ADPH and RCP, helps make the case for evidence-based services that are effective and accessible for users.

Some healthcare professionals are not comfortable discussing weight with patients, while others may doubt the efficacy of such services, meaning some patients might be missing out.

Our guide will help professionals engage with people across the obesity pathway, to ensure those referring into the service and those eligible to access services get all the support and information they need.

Read the full blog post here

National child measurement programme operational guidance

Guidance for local commissioners, providers and schools on running the national child measurement programme (NCMP) as part of the government’s commitment to tackling the public health challenge of excess weight.

tape-measure-2406650_1920 (1)

 

The publication of the Childhood Obesity Plan: A Plan for Action, in August 2016 shows that tackling child obesity is a priority for the Government. The plan aims to significantly reduce England’s rate of childhood obesity within the next ten years. Most local authorities have also identified addressing childhood obesity as a key issue in their health and wellbeing strategies, and reducing obesity is prioritised in many Sustainability and Transformation Plans.

The NCMP is key to monitoring the progress of the Government’s Childhood Obesity Plan. It provides the data for the Public Health Outcomes Framework indicators on “excess weight in children aged four to five years and ten to 11 years.” Because the data is valid at local level, it can also be used to inform the development and monitoring of local childhood obesity strategies.

National child measurement programme operational guidance

National child measurement programme: information for schools

Cochrane reviews show impact of lifestyle changes on obesity

Two Cochrane reviews, published today, show that a combination of diet, physical activity and behavioural change interventions may reduce weight in children and adolescents | OnMedica

fruits-850491_960_720.jpg

The two reviews look at the effects of diet, physical activity and behavioural interventions in treating children with overweight or obesity from six years old to early adulthood. They summarise the results of 114 studies which involved over 13,000 children and young people.

Adult weight management

Public Health England has published guidance to support the commissioning and delivery of tier 2 adult weight management services.

This guidance supports commissioners and providers of tier 2 adult weight management services, including:

  • local authorities (LAs)
  • clinical commissioning groups (CCGs)
  • NHS institutions

The guidance is published under the following categories: following categories:

Commission and provide

Adult weight management services: commission and provide

Weight management services: insights into user experiences

Interventions

Data collection

The social barriers to an active society are being ignored

The simplicity of exhorting people to “be more active” belies how complicated it can be to put this into practice. Increasing physical activity requires individuals to do things differently | The Conversation

exercise-1835032_960_720.jpg

Can individuals alone make the changes that are required? Public health campaigns imply that they can, focusing on how to live a healthier, more active life. But do the roots of inactivity really lie only in the behaviour, decisions and motivations of individuals? Or are there wider factors which need to be recognised and addressed?

Plenty of evidence suggests that external influences are also important, and there is mileage in ensuring that these elements are integrated into addressing individual behaviour.

Consider, for example, the challenge of raising physical activity levels among older people. This is a priority for public health given the predicted 89.3% increase in the numbers of older adults to 9.9m in the UK by 2039. According to Sport England, 54% of those aged 75 and above are doing less than 30 minutes of physical activity a week.

Full blog post here

TVs in the bedroom linked to childhood obesity, study finds

Scientists say there is a clear link between having a TV in your bedroom as a young child and becoming overweight later in childhood | | International Journal of Obesity | Story via The Guardian 

tv child.png

Children who have TVs in their bedrooms are more likely to be overweight than those who do not, a study by University College London scientists suggests.

Sitting still for long periods watching TV has long been thought to be one of the changes in behaviour of the last few decades that could be contributing to the obesity epidemic. It has been suspected that having a TV in the bedroom might exacerbate the problem. Children or adolescents might be snacking unobserved, they could be exposed to advertising for junk food while watching adult programmes and they may not sleep as well, which is also linked to putting on weight.

Published in the International Journal of Obesity, the research used data on more than 12,000 children born in 2000/2001 who were recruited to the UK Millennium Cohort Study, set up to look at the influences on children’s development into adulthood. They investigated the data from the age of seven to 11. More than half had a TV in their bedroom.

They found that girls who had a TV in their bedroom at age seven were at an approximately 30% higher risk of being overweight at age 11, compared to children who did not have a TV in their bedroom. Boys were 20% more likely to become overweight.

Full story : The Guardian

See also: TVs in children’s bedrooms ‘increase risk of obesity’ | BBC

Full reference: Heilmann, A et al. | Longitudinal associations between television in the bedroom and body fatness in a UK cohort study | International Journal of Obesity | article preview 1 June 2017