Child obesity: shrinking the numbers

THE term ‘childhood obesity epidemic’ has become a buzz phrase for this decade, and one in four Australian children is now classed as overweight or obese.1

The mainstream media is saturated with stories of the dangerously ever-increasing size of our children.

More than 800 studies on childhood obesity have been published in the medical literature in the past two years alone. 

However, recent data suggests that Australia’s two-decades-plus epidemic of rising childhood obesity may finally have plateaued in preschool-aged children.

This encouraging data begs the question: who or what is responsible for this small glimmer of hope in the fight against marching levels of obesity among the nation’s children?

A report by researchers from Deakin University, published in the International Journal of Obesity in March, showed a decline of 3.1% in rates of overweight and obesity in 3.5-year-olds between