Supersized schoolchildren: Obesity problem out of control

AS alarm calls go the report that some schoolchildren need trousers with 54in waistlines is very much in society’s Defcon 1 category.

School uniforms of those tremendous proportions presage a life of ill health and limited opportunity. They may even suggest a life of dependency. They also indicate a
lifestyle where the idea of tough love is unknown.

People are getting bigger but it would be wrong, and maybe even cowardly, to try to pretend that a child with a 54in waist is part of a natural evolution rather than a result of a
sedentary life fuelled by bad food and, for whatever reason, indulged by parents who should but don’t know better.

Schoolwear supplier Jonathan Eakin yesterday recalled how things have changed: “Ten years ago, we brought in a special elasticated pants for primary school kids... we started with a 28in waist... this year for secondary school we did it up to 50in and we have been asked for 52in and 54in waists.”

Society should always be slow to get involved in a family’s affairs but these figures suggest that these obese children are not the only ones who need urgent help.


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