Mar 07 2014

World Health Organization To Focus On Global Sugar Intake

From a World Health Organization (WHO) Report: Free sugars contribute to the overall energy density of diets. Ensuring energy balance is critical to maintaining healthy body weight and ensuring optimal nutrient intake. There is increasing concern that consumption of free sugars, particularly in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages, may result in both reduced intake of foods containing more nutritionally adequate calories and an increase in total caloric intake, leading to an unhealthy diet, weight gain and increased risk of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). Also of great concern is the role free sugars play in the development of dental diseases, particularly dental caries. Dental diseases are the most prevalent NCDs globally and though great improvements in prevention and treatment have occurred in the last decades, dental diseases continue to cause pain, anxiety, functional limitation and social handicap through tooth loss, for large numbers of people worldwide. The treatment of dental diseases is expensive—costing between 5 and 10% of health budgets in industrialised countries—and would exceed the financial resources available for the whole of health care for children in the majority of lower-income countries. The objective of this guideline is to provide recommendations on the consumption of free sugars to reduce the risk of NCDs in adults and children, with a particular focus on the prevention and control of weight gain and dental caries. When finalized, the recommendations in this guideline can be used by program managers and policy planners to assess current intake of free sugars relative to a benchmark and develop measures to decrease intake of ...

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Apr 29 2010

Graehm Gray: Governmental Penalties for Obese Citizens-Part Two

After reading the last feedback mail from my most recent posting on the potential of governmental penalties or restrictions for those individuals that may be over a certain weight limit (body size limit), I realized that this is a very hot topic for debate. I was surprised that so many people agreed about levying extra taxes and increasing the cost of health care for those citizens that are classified as obese. In addition, suggestions came in regarding extra taxes on artificially sweetened sodas(specifically with high fructose corn syrup), candy and donuts, and of course fast foods. Someone mentioned the recent laws that Mexico passed about requiring daily exercise for school children and a law that would restrict schools from selling junk food to students. I looked in to this and found out the following details: The lower house of the Mexican Congress passed a law against childhood obesity. This law will try to limit the selling of junk food in primary and secondary schools and also require daily half hour exercise periods. The new law will also try to stop children from eating and drinking foods with high fat, high sugar and preservatives and to encourage shops near schools to sell fruit and “healthy juice.” According to Mexican data, almost 52 percent of the 5 to 11 year olds in Mexico are either obese or overweight and that Mexico has one of the ...

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Feb 23 2010

Graehm Gray: Childhood Obesity Definitions – Part Two

Okay, let’s review: what do we know so far? A. We know that obesity is an extra accumulation of fat. B. We know that the problem is coming from an imbalance-more energy in the form of calories (food) coming into the body-our children are eating more and not enough energy (calories) being burned off-not enough exercise. C. We  know that a pediatrician and researcher uses the Body Mass Index (BMI) as a way to identify weight problems in children-a way to measure your child’s weight against other children of the same age and sex and tell us whether he or she is at risk; D. We know that there are lots of consequences from being obese-heart disease, arthritis, sleep apnea and psychological problems and finally, E.  We know that President Obama said that 30 percent of our children are either overweight or obese .So what’s next?  Are we all sure we know whether our children are obese or just overweight? And what do we do to solve this problem? Class, let’s continue our journey-now Part two: Overweight vs. Obese: (CDC) These are terms used to classify kids and adults and based on Body Mass Index (BMI-height and weight). BMI for kids and teens takes into account growth changes, differences in body fat between boys and girls. BMI calculator for Child and Teen. So go to your pediatrician’s (or primary ...

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Feb 19 2010

Graehm Gray: Childhood Obesity Definitions – Part One

I guess by now, everyone, everywhere has heard that President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle have placed childhood obesity on the top of their “to get rid of” list. I think its actually ahead of some Republican pundits. Yes, childhood obesity has finally made it to the front page headlines. All of us in the press and academic fields have known for quite a while that our children have been gaining weight at an alarming rate. The President informed us that over 30 percent of our children are either overweight and or obese. We also have known that our children are not exercising as much. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that there is an imbalance-more calories going in and less calories being burned up. Result: a positive weight gain. Okay-that’s means overweight. But the one item that still needs clarification is: how do I know if my child is overweight or obese? I need to know that definition. So here is a sampling of what I could find out:   Merriam-Webster-doesn’t have a definition of childhood obesity. Their definition of obesity is: a condition characterized by the excessive accumulation of fat in the body (Merriam-Webster) Medilexicon.com-Ideal Body Weight: a weight that is believed to be maximally healthful for a person, based chiefly on height but modified by factors such as gender, age, build, and degree of muscular ...

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