The ITF supports call for action for parent interventions to help combat child obesity

The Infant & Toddler Forum (ITF) supports the advice of Professor John Ashton, the president of the UK Faculty of Public Health that all parents should be offered state-funded classes on how to bring up their children in an attempt to tackle rising levels of child obesity, mental distress and underachievement. He called for more parenting programmes and telephone helplines and said schools should introduce daily meditation sessions.

Judy More, paediatric dietitian and ITF member, said: “It’s now well accepted that what happens during the very early years  of life  (starting in the womb) has lifelong effects on certain aspects of health and well-being. It is clear that we do need to act earlier to ensure every child gets the best start in life. Education is paramount to achieving this. Our latest report  Early Nutrition for Later Health: Time to Act Earlier, not only echoes this call for education but highlights the need to take a life course approach to health and wellbeing starting before pregnancy  – at preconception and continuing throughout the very early years to encourage healthy family  lifestyles. Families need consistent, simple, advice to get back on the right track if we are going to halt the obesity epidemic.”

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Further Reading

  • Vegetarian and vegan diets have become increasingly popular over the past few years, with more and more parents raising their children on a plant-based diet. Toddlers have high-energy needs and small stomachs, so it is important parents know how to ensure their child gets all the nutrients needed for healthy growth and development. The Infant & Toddler Forum are here to help with practical tips and advice for parents considering a vegetarian or vegan diet for their toddler.
  • Encouraging toddlers to keep physically active will help them to develop movement skills, stay a healthy weight and keep a healthy heart. No matter the weather, we have fun activities which will keep your toddler active and entertained this Easter!
  • Pregnant women are given lots of advice surrounding healthy eating and lifestyle, but this is often based on old or outdated information. There are so many myths and misconceptions floating around that it can be difficult for mums-to-be to tell fact from fiction. Here are our tips and guidance, so you can feel confident about having a healthy pregnancy.