The sour side of teens’ sugary diet

The sour side of teens’ sugary diet

TEENAGE boys consume a staggering 23 teaspoons of sugar daily from drinks and food, an average of 92 grams a day, according to a new series of a report cards on Australian health.

Australia’s Health Tracker shows almost 30 per cent of young people are overweight or obese and 91.5 per cent are not doing enough physical activity.

The assessment of the nation’s declining health also found that almost 40 per cent of young people’s total daily energy consumption comes from junk food.

Rex Milligan, manager of Foodbank WA’s Healthy Food for All, said the findings highlighted some of the significant health risks that its nutrition education programs aimed to address.

“We have a team of qualified dietitians, nutritionists and health promotion staff who deliver a range of hands-on, practical healthy eating and cooking classes to support children and young adults to make better food choices,” Mr Milligan said.

“We also provide professional development and training to other health professionals to help us expand our reach, particularly in rural and remote communities.”

Australian Health Policy Collaboration director Rosemary Calder said risk factors encountered during childhood and adolescence could lead to increased risk of chronic disease.

“We urgently need action to help prevent chronic diseases in Australian children and young people and improve their health across the life-course,” Ms Calder said.

More than 50 health organisations worked together on Australia’s Heath Tracker – the first assessment of its kind – to warn governments and industries that immediate action is needed to fight chronic disease.