Today's children could have shorter life

SUFFOLK children today have shorter life expectancies than their parents.The shocking fact that youngsters are expected to live one to two years less than their parents is a result of the serious and growing problem of obesity in the county.

SUFFOLK children today have shorter life expectancies than their parents.

The shocking fact that youngsters are expected to live one to two years less than their parents is a result of the serious and growing problem of obesity in the county.

It is the first time in around 200 years that life expectancy has gone down rather than up and a terrible indictment of Suffolk's youngsters' lifestyles.

Today the county's director of public health, Dr Peter Bradley, warned that not only were the younger generation expected to die earlier but that their quality of life may not be as high and said parents needed to ask tough questions to prevent this doomsday scenario materialising.

He said: “A young person's generation will have a shorter life expectancy than their parents.

“It is the first time it has happened for about 200 years. Until now life expectancy has gone progressively up; even through the war years life expectancy went up.

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“Now it has gone down by one to two years and it will probably keep going down.

“The current prediction is as a result of obesity and as obesity levels keep going up life expectancy will keep going down before eventually it will reach a plateau.

“Parents need to ask question about why their children can't walk to school, why children aren't going out to play enough.”

Dr Bradley added that decreasing life expectancy was particularly a problem in Suffolk, where obesity rates are higher than the national average, saying: “It is something we should be really worried about.”

Does more need to be done to tackle obesity? Are you concerned about your child's health? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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