More than 22,000 children are obese when they leave primary school


According to the report, it is estimated that nearly a third of children between the ages of two and 15 are classified as overweight or obese, and that younger generations are becoming obese early and staying that way for longer.

The LGA, which represents 370 town and city councils in England and Wales, warned that severe child obesity rates, which have been published for the first time, are contributing to a multi-billion dollar ill-health time bomb.

Figures from 2016-17 showed that for children in reception - aged four or five - about 1 in 40 (15,000 out of 629,000), was classed as severely obese. Of course, his is due in part to the gulf of cost differences between clean, healthy food and unhealthy, processed food, as well as lack of access to activities and fitness facilities.

But it added that this prevention work, including the ability of councils to provide weight management services for children and adults, is being hampered by a £600 million reduction in councils' public health budgets by central government between 2015/16 and 2019/20.

The government's childhood obesity plan already includes a sugar tax on fizzy drinks, with talks this tax may be extended to include milk-based drinks such as milkshakes.

MPs are also calling for a 9pm watershed on junk food advertising and says there needs to be a ban on brand generated characters or licensed TV and film characters being used to promote HFSS products on broadcast and other media.

For improvement to be made, concrete action will need to be taken.

Regulating and restricting discounting and price promotions.

While numerous points in the report are to do with government-level changes such as marketing and tighter regulations on snacks and processed foods, schools will also be expected to play a part. Fiscal measures should be put in place for the reformation of products where health targets aren't met.

One point the report makes is that there should be systems in place for identifying and supporting children who are overweight and obese in ways that can be applied to their home lives as well as at school. The report also emphasises the need for a focus on "healthy lifestyles" rather than using any offensive or stigmatising language.

It called for the government to reverse these reductions and bring in further changes to tackle childhood obesity.

The number of 10 and 11-year-olds classed as severely obese, the most overweight scale, in the final year of primary school is almost double that of those in reception, new analysis has found.

The committee also asked for councils to have increased planning and licensing powers to stop "the proliferation" of fast-food outlets from being set up in their areas.

While a Department of Health spokesperson said its plan to tackle childhood obesity was "the most ambitious in the world".