If you think childhood obesity is a problem relegated to rich countries, it may be time to think again.
A new report out from the World Health Organization (WHO) points to an “alarming” number of obese children.
Highlights from the report include:
- At least 41 million children under age 5 are obese or overweight
- There are now more overweight and obese children in low and middle-income countries than in high income countries
- Overweight kids in the developing world more than doubled from 7.5 million in 1990 to 15.5 million in 2014
One of the largest concerns is the rate at which obesity and overweight is climbing in the developing world. The WHO report found that Libya, Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Botswana were the countries with the highest percentage of overweight children among African countries.
And what’s to blame for this rapid rise in pediatric weight? The report cites the marketing of unhealthy food and drinks in the developing world as a primary contributor.
But it’s not all bad news – the WHO report outlined 6 main, practical areas to help end childhood obesity:
- Promote intake of healthy foods
- Promote physical activity
- Preconception and pregnancy care
- Early childhood diet and physical activity
- Health, nutrition and physical activity for school-age children
- Weight management
For more information about the WHO report, click here.