Poorer children likely to be obese, says Anna Soubry
Children from poor backgrounds usually tend to be overweight, a minister has claimed, blaming “an abundance of bad food” for the location.
Anna Soubry said 50 years ago youngsters from deprived households were taunted for being “skinny runts”, but this scenario had reversed.
“Once I walk around, you may almost now tell somebody’s background by their weight,” she told the Daily Telegraph.
Campaigners said government policies were exacerbating child poverty.
Ministers have threatened food manufacturers with legislation unless they cut the quantity of fat, sugar and salt of their products and urged firms to enroll to the voluntary “responsibility deal” to lessen calories.
The Conservative MP, a junior minister within the Department of Health who’s answerable for public health, said a 3rd of youngsters leaving primary school were overweight or obese and the poorest were among those most in peril.
During her school days, Ms Soubry said poorer children were referred to as “skinny runts”, because there have been not getting definitely the right food.
“You must tell the demography of kids by how thin they were. It’s essential to see by observing their eyes,” she said.
But she said there has been a now a link between childhood poverty and obesity: “Obviously, not everybody who’s overweight comes from deprived backgrounds but that’s where the propensity lies.”
She added: “This is a heartbreaking indisputable fact that people who find themselves a few of the most deprived in our society reside on an inadequate diet. But this time it’s an abundance of bad food.”
Too many fogeys, she added, believed there has been no alternative to junk food as it was cheap. She expressed concern on the variety of children whose breakfast consisted of packet of crisps and a fizzy drink or fried meat in a bun.
She also said she lamented the expansion of “TV meals” on the expense of families sitting around their dinner tables.
According to Department of Health figures, the poorest children are almost twice as prone to be obese than the richest.
The Child Poverty Action Group said there has been clear connection between deprivation and obesity but ministers had to revisit their very own policies other than blame parents.
“The genuine this is why our obesity problem goes to get bigger within the years ahead is because our child poverty problem goes to get much bigger end result of the government’s own policies,” said the organisation’s head of policy Imran Hussain.
“Poor children are more likely to overlook out on healthy food on cost grounds than children living in households with average incomes. And research shows that once the incomes of poor families rise, parents spend the gains on improving the diets in their children through buying fresh fruit.”
Labour, which has launched a consultation at the case for statutory limits at the amount of sugar and salt in children’s food, said the govt was “doing nothing” to tackle the obesity crisis among children.
“It’s far clear that their voluntary approach isn’t really working,” said shadow health minister Diane Abbott. “If the govt. fails to behave we are going to continue storing up huge problems for the rustic and the NHS within the long run.”
Education Secretary Michael Gove has asked two restaurant owners to check how nutrition in schools could be improved, but TV chef Jamie Oliver has criticised the government’s approach, saying healthy food standards are being eroded.