Almost a quarter of Lincoln 10 and 11-year-olds are overweight
Almost a quarter of ten and 11 year olds in Lincoln are obese, according to new figures.
Statistics show 22.3 per cent of Year 6 pupils in the city have the most serious classification of weight problem, compared to a national average on 19.2 per cent.
The number of obese children in reception classes is 10.22 per cent, compared to an average of 9.49 per cent.
With the exception of North Kesteven, the whole county has above average numbers of obese four and five year olds.
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Only 7.81 per cent of NK reception pupils are obese.
The figures were released this week by the Lincolnshire Research Observatory.
It follows a weighing programme across city primary schools. Lincolnshire County Council will assume responsibility for public health on April 1 and councillors say there are plans in place to reduce the problem.
Councillor Sue Wooley, executive councillor for health, housing and community, said: "We are aware that parts of the county are above the national average for childhood obesity including for Year 6 children.
"Overall in Lincolnshire our childhood obesity rates are still slightly above the national average and we have initiatives in place to tackle this.
"The good news is that in some of the areas where childhood obesity is high, these rates are already reducing.
"Last year we set the target that by 2017, we will have reduced the level of childhood obesity in Lincolnshire to below the national average.
"Projects such as growing, cooking and eating in schools, and the Fit Kids programme are starting to show real success in improving health and social outcomes for children and reducing inequalities, but there is no quick fix to this national problem."
Julie Cantwell, infant feeding co-ordinator at Lincolnshire Community Health Services Trust, believes that breastfeeding newborns is one way to tackle child obesity before it happens.
"We know that breastfeeding reduces both childhood obesity and obesity further on in life," she said.
"It is all to do with the composition of the breast milk. There are no added extras in breast milk and it is all good for the child.
"Additionally, babies self regulate their intake of breast milk and are in control of their feeding habits. If we can instill that in a child from a young age, they can take that on into later life. I would encourage all mothers to consider breast feeding their newborn as it can actively combat child obesity."