Overweight children ‘more likely to be fat adults’

Overweight children 'more likely to be fat adults'People who are overweight in childhood are more likely to keep the weight on as they grow into adulthood, by which time it can be really hard to slim down, one expert has noted.

Bridget Benelam, senior nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation, said there is evidence to suggest that the diets and activity levels of young children are fine, but this really drops off when they move into adolescence.

"The activity goes way down, particularly for girls, and the dietary intake – as well as the micro nutrient intake, with vitamins and minerals – gets really very bad when they get to adolescence," she added.

If young people can adopt good habits when they are younger to try to stave off their descent into a much worse diet and activity pattern, it would be a "really positive thing", the expert explained.

The simple fact is that if young people gain excess weight in their youth, their chances of becoming overweight or obese as adults is much higher, because there are obesity tracks from childhood to adulthood, making it far easier to lose weight, she said.

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