The Childhood Obesity Summit – a must for dietitians?

Published on the 3rd Oct, 2016 by Azmina

As experts in nutrition, dietitians pride themselves in keeping up to date with the latest developments in public health policy, research and nutrition trends. The publication of Public Health England’s Childhood Obesity Report in August 2016 received mixed reviews, and the Childhood Obesity Summit offers us a chance to come together and debate the best way forward.

When and where?

The Royal Society, London on Thursday 3rd November. Full programmechildhood-obesity

Why go?

Childhood obesity impacts on the social and emotional well-being of children and their future health. A third of UK children are overweight or obese by the age of 9, and current data suggests that, for the first time ever, children’s life expectancy will be shorter than current generations as a direct result of diseases and ill-health caused by obesity. I believe the Summit will attract a range of stakeholders including Government, food industry retailers and take-away outlets, restaurants, healthcare professionals, and the media, so it’s crucial that dietitians and degree-qualified nutritionists are represented.

My best bits…

Apart from the tweeting and networking, I’m particularly looking forward to hearing what Dr Sarah Wollaston has to say about Government strategy and policy, it’ll be insightful to hear Richard Dobbs from McKinsey’s analyse the potential impact of the Childhood Obesity Plan as it stands and how to maximise impact, and it will be nice to see past colleague Sue Davies talk about the Which? research on how consumers feel their purchases are influenced by the promotion of unhealthy foods.

The Panel Debates are my most exciting parts – sorry, that’s when I tweet less, as I want to be fully engaged! We’ll debate nutrient profiling, sugar reduction targets, sugar tax, how to motivate industry to action, and much more.

Let’s work together to create a less obesogenic environment – we’ve got to make it easy for kids and parents to make healthier choices, and that requires all the stakeholders to plan and execute together.