In Ontario, nearly a third of children and youth are overweight or obese, conditions that can result in chronic diseases like diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
As part of its strategy to keep Ontario healthy, the Ontario government has set an ambitious goal to reduce childhood obesity by 20 per cent over five years. In support, Public Health Ontario developed a comprehensive primer of scientific evidence and data to inform the work of Ontario’s Healthy Kids Panel and its resulting No Time to Wait: the Healthy Kids Strategy.
Public Health Ontario’s Addressing Obesity in Children and Youth: Evidence to Guide Action for Ontario is a three-part report outlining:
- Trends in risk factors, and strategies to measure and monitor obesity rates and risk factors
- The effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of interventions to prevent and treat overweight and obesity
- Healthy weight promotion and obesity prevention programs and initiatives implemented by Ontario public health units and other jurisdictions
Overweight and obesity is caused by an imbalance between food and beverage intake and physical activity. A range of influences contribute to this imbalance. These individual, family, community, and society-level influences begin before birth and continue throughout childhood.
A comprehensive, collaborative approach is required to address this significant public health issue.