Xinhua News Agency, Beijing, May 20th: Nearly 20% are overweight and obese!

The "heavy" that teenagers can't bear

  Xinhua News Agency reporter

  Nearly 20% of children and adolescents between the ages of 6 and 17 are still overweight and obese. On May 20, when another student nutrition day is coming, the obesity rate of adolescents is still high, which makes the experts and scholars attending the 2022 Food Education China Summit Forum They are worried.

  Experts call for the urgent need to strengthen food education education, strengthen nutrition and health education and dietary guidance in schools, kindergartens, and nursery institutions, and guide the majority of young people to have a scientifically balanced diet and a balanced diet. The "Healthy China Action (2019-2030)" The formulated "Primary and Secondary School Health Promotion Action" was further implemented.

  "Eating out more and more problems"

  According to the "Dietary Guidelines for Chinese Residents (2022)", the overweight and obesity rate of children and adolescents aged 6 to 17 is as high as 19.0%, which means that about one in every five children and adolescents is overweight and obese, compared with 18% in 2015.

  Experts said that in recent years, there has been a phenomenon of "height outpacing weight" during the growth and development of young people.

In the 15 years from 2002 to 2017, taking 16-year-old males in urban my country as an example, their average height increased by 3.9 cm, while their weight increased by 14.8 catties.

  "Healthy China Action (2019-2030)" pointed out: "At present, the per capita daily intake of added sugar in my country is about 30g, of which the intake of children and adolescents deserves high attention."

  "In the new era, the variety and quantity of food in my country have been greatly enriched, the level of food consumption has been significantly improved, and the nutritional and health status of urban and rural residents has been significantly improved. There are more and more problems. For example, the dietary structure is unreasonable, hidden hunger is serious, the rapid growth of overweight and obesity has not been effectively curbed, nutrition-related chronic diseases are developing at a younger age, and the task of improving the physical fitness of residents, especially students, is still arduous.” National Food and Nutrition Chen Mengshan, director of the Advisory Committee, said in a video speech at the 2022 Food Education China Summit Forum.

  Little chubby, big problem

  "Primary and middle school students are at a critical stage of growth and development." "Healthy China Action (2019-2030)" pointed out, "Primary and middle school students have prominent health problems such as obesity and myopia."

  Overweight and obesity in children and adolescents brings many problems:

  - On the surface, it appears to be overnutrition, but in fact it is hidden malnutrition.

  Obesity itself is a manifestation of malnutrition, said Zhu Wenli, a professor of medicine at Peking University who has long been engaged in student nutrition research.

The survey shows that most chubby buns still have micronutrient deficiencies while having excess energy.

  "Obesity appears to be overnutrition, but in fact it is easy to have hidden malnutrition." said Mi Jie, a professor at Beijing Children's Hospital Affiliated to Capital Medical University. Because of too much body fat, obese children are prone to lack of vitamin D, which affects calcium levels. Absorption and bone development, height development, and prone to osteoporosis and other problems.

  - Increased risk of chronic disease.

  Studies have shown that children who become "little sugar people" are mostly caused by obesity.

"Obesity is a risk factor for hyperlipidemia, atherosclerosis, essential hypertension, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome and other high-risk diseases in adulthood." said Ma Jun, director of the Institute of Child and Adolescent Health at Peking University. Long-term follow-up studies have found that people who were obese in childhood had about 24 times the risk of developing diabetes in adulthood compared to those of normal weight.

  - Injured, more sad.

  Being overweight and obese can cause social and psychological problems.

Ma Jun said that in addition to endangering physical health, studies have found that overweight and obesity can reduce children and adolescents' self-esteem and self-confidence, and bring about a higher risk of being bullied and low performance.

Obese children are also likely to bring negative stereotypes to their peers, such as being industrious, poor in stature, inflexible in activities, inactive in sports, slow in reaction and easy to get sick, resulting in problems such as incompatibility and depression in children.

  Health starts from strengthening "food education"

  Children and youth are the future of the motherland and the hope of the nation.

In September 2021, the State Council issued the "Outline for the Development of Children in China (2021-2030)", which put forward the goal of "effectively controlling the rising trend of overweight and obesity in children".

  Scientific weight loss starts with adjusting the dietary structure.

"The intake of oily and salty meat is too much, and the intake of vegetables is significantly insufficient. The dietary structure of young people must be adjusted."

  In order to "maintain a healthy weight", "Healthy China Action (2019-2030)" provides a "prescription", advocating primary and secondary school students to "learn the life skills of choosing food and rationally matching food. Eat breakfast every day, choose reasonable snacks" "sufficient amount" Drink water and drink less or no sugary beverages”, “Self-monitoring growth and development indicators such as height and weight”, and “Avoid the intake of foods high in sugar, salt, and oil.”

  The "Outline for the Development of Children in China (2021-2030)" proposes to "strengthen the concept that parents or other guardians are the first responsible persons for children's health".

Experts appeal that the best love parents have for their children is not to blindly satisfy their appetites, but to help children establish a healthy life concept from an early age, develop good eating and exercise habits, keep their mouths shut, and stretch their legs.

  "China's nutrition education still lacks scientific and systematic and effective strategies suitable for China's national conditions, lacks the support of policies, especially laws and regulations, and has not established a good interaction between schools, families and communities." Zhu Wenli believes that the government should actively take the lead and ensure nutrition in the form of laws. Education has been carried out smoothly, gradually enriching the content of education, and developing and improving the education system.

  "From the current reality, food education is more fundamental and urgent than moral, intellectual, physical, and aesthetic labor. It should start from raising awareness, starting from strengthening food education, and comprehensively promoting the improvement of national nutrition and health literacy." Chen Mengshan Say.

(Reporters Li Bin, Wang Junlu, Zhang Manzi, Lin Miaomiao)

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