Counselling and dieting among new guidelines on child obesity

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A mother feeds her son healthy complementary foods in the Dolakha district in Nepal. On Wednesday WHO released new guidelines to address overweight and obesity in children. © 2013 Valerie Caldas, Courtesy of Photoshare

An estimated 41 million children under five years old are obese or overweight, UN health experts warned on Wednesday, at the launch of new guidelines to tackle what they have called a global epidemic.

Faced with evidence indicating that the problem affects rich and poor countries alike, the World Health Organization WHO has released details on how trained professionals can better identify youngsters in need of help.

The just-published guidelines include counselling and dieting, an assessment of eating habits along with weight and height measurements.

Failing to heed these recommendations may leave vulnerable children at an increased risk of dying young from a range of life-threatening diseases, the agency's Dr Francesco Branca, Director of the Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, told Daniel Johnson.

Duration: 4’20″

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