Talk to us about childhood obesity

Published: Tuesday, 22nd November 2016

Havering residents are being invited to share their views on how children in the borough can be supported to lead healthier lives as part of a new London-wide campaign.

Havering residents are being invited to share their views on how children in the borough can be supported to lead healthier lives as part of a new London-wide campaign The Great Weight Debate – a London conversation on childhood obesity.

Today, the London Borough of Havering has joined councils and NHS organisations across London to launch the Great Weight Debate and is encouraging all residents to complete a short survey to share their views on childhood obesity and what they think can be done to tackle it.

London has more overweight and obese children than any other global city, including New York, Sydney, Paris or Madrid. It also has a higher rate of obesity than anywhere else in the country with more than a third of all children in London overweight or obese by the time they leave primary school.

Obese children are at increased risk of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, pre-diabetes, bone and joint problems and breathing difficulties. Being overweight or obese can affect a child’s mental well-being, lead to low self-esteem and absence from school which can affect their learning.

Councillor Wendy Brice-Thompson, Cabinet Member for Health, said:

“We would like as many residents as possible to have their say; parents, carers, grandparents, young people, community groups and schools. Together we can make a real difference to the health, lives and futures of the children in our borough."

“Havering’s Prevention of Obesity Strategy 2016-2019 shows how we will shape our local environment to promote healthy lifestyles; develop a culture that makes healthy choices the norm; and encourage residents both young and old to eat well and be more active. “The action plan associated with the strategy will be refreshed annually, and by joining the conversation residents can help to shape these plans in the future.”

In further support of the need to tackle obesity, Havering’s Director of Public Health has this year chosen childhood obesity as the focus for her independent Annual Report. Residents seeking information and advice can visit the Council’s ‘Achieving a healthy weight ’ webpage.