Here’s an important research paper on pediatric obesity, physical activity and physical fitness. It reminds us that recommendations for childhood physical activity in children 5–18 years are a minimum of 60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous physical activity (24) and children under 6 years should engage in physical activity (play and exercise) for at least 3 hours daily (WHO guidelines). Similarly sedentary guidelines suggest a maximum screen time of 2 hours per day in children over 5 years, not more than 1 hour of supervised screen-time in those 2–5 years. In those under 2 years, it is recommended that screens are only used for supervised communication (video-conferencing) with parents.
What alarmed me reading this paper was the weakness of clinicians in understanding best practice.
Let’s take the UK for an example where there’s an escalating crisis in pediatric obesity with government intervention way behind the curve. This article, quite rightly focuses upon physical activity and physical fitness but there is a similar challenge related to unhealthy diet.
In the UK, the authorities are slow to intervene, arguing about details whilst children are getter fatter and increasingly at risk of dying ahead of their parents. This paper highlights how the clinicians have a confused message, so it’s no surprise that matters are deteriorating.
Of course, with the political double crisis in the UK, pediatric obesity is likely to escalate. Remember, a hardcore socialist government would just deploy more poorly deluded clinicians. A radical solution is required, and that can only be delivered by a radical conservative government with a young and passionate leader.