Reducing childhood obesity matters to Louise Baur

Reducing childhood obesity matters to Louise Baur


bjbj Louise Baur: Obesity isn t just a health
issue it s an issue that strikes at the heart of how we function in society. Super: Why
is obesity a problem? Louise Baur: Obesity is a major public health problem. It essentially
exploded onto the westernised and westernised world scene in the past thirty years. Here
in Australia we saw a dramatic rise starting from the mid-1980s. Type 2 diabetes, we are
seeing a dramatic increase in the number of people who have that problem. We are also
seeing heart disease, fatty liver disease, a range of psycho-social consequences as well.
Obesity, particularly in adolescence, is associated with a range of cardiovascular risk problems
and children and young people who are obese are stigmatised and often bullied. So it s
a significant health issue. Super: How can we combat the problem? Louise Baur: Here at
the Prevention Research Collaboration we re interested in intervening in settings that
are upstream from the individual. So, we re interested in early life interventions, we
re interested in the physical activity environment, active transport, how our cities are actually
organised. We re interested in workplaces. How much people sit. And we re interested
also in the food environment, about food marketing, nutrition information, how food is made available.
All of those things are really important in influencing what we eat and what we do. And
they in turn are profoundly important in whether an individual becomes overweight or not. Super:
If we do nothing? Louise Baur: If we don t do anything about this, then we ll have a
large number of adolescents entering adulthood already with established risk factors for
heart disease, diabetes and fatty liver disease. They ll be entering adulthood with the prospect
of decreased fertility. They ll be entering adulthood knowing that their working lives
will be cut short because they already have a chronic disease at the start of adulthood.
Even if it s not an issue directly for you, it is very likely to be an issue for your
children, your grandchildren, other family members, and certainly members in your close
community. It is already affecting them. [Content_Types].xml Iw}, $yi} _rels/.rels theme/theme/themeManager.xml
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