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Scotland: classroom obesity - a growing problem

07 February 2020

The obesity inequality gap among Scottish school pupils is continuing to grow, with almost a quarter of children now starting school at risk of being overweight or obese.

The proportion of children beginning their education overweight has remained largely constant for 20 years, but the latest Body mass index of Primary 1 children in Scotland report has revealed ‘substantial inequalities’, with pupils in the poorest areas much more likely to be overweight or obese than their peers from more affluent areas.

Of the 9561 children measured in the most deprived areas in Scotland, 26.5% were judged to be at risk of being either overweight or obese, up from 26.1% in the previous year. In the least deprived areas, 17.5% of 9182 children were at risk of being overweight or obese.

Of the 9561 children measured in the most deprived areas in Scotland, 26.5% were judged to be at risk of being either overweight or obese

The Scottish Government is investing in a range of measures to achieve its target of cutting child obesity in half by 2030. A spokesman said action included the introduction of a Restricting Foods Promotions Bill ‘to restrict junk food promotions that encourage impulse-buying and overconsumption’.

Image credit | iStock

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