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Health Committee report on obesity puts welcome focus on need to protect child health

The House of Commons Health Select Committee, chaired by Dr Sarah Wollaston MP, published its report on child obesity today (30 November).

Commenting on the report's recommendations, Professor Simon Capewell, Vice President for Policy at the UK Faculty of Public Health (FPH), said: "FPH warmly welcomes this report; the Health Select Committee are to be congratulated for taking a thorough and evidence-based approach to improving child health. One third of children leaving primary school are overweight or obese and this should not be accepted as the norm.

"The calories children consume and the exercise they get are affected by various factors including family, schools, access to safe outdoor space and food advertising legislation. That is why all aspects of the strategy need to be implemented if we are to tackle childhood obesity and reduce the ill health, financial costs and misery it causes.

"The report offers a stark warning to food and beverage companies: do the right thing now, voluntarily, or mandatory approaches will be rapidly introduced. FPH welcomes the report's call for a duty on sugary drinks; the evidence is clear that such a duty would protect children's health."

Written: 30/11/2015 , last modified: 23/05/2016