Charity Sounds Alarm on Rising Childhood Obesity and Diabetes, Citing Lack of Activity as Key Factor in Poor Health and Happiness

Last Updated on: 22nd November 2023, 03:44 pm

Analysis from the NHS has revealed a concerning increase in the number of children receiving treatment for medical conditions usually associated with middle-aged adults. The Youth Sport Trust, a UK leading children’s charity, have responded to the news that more children now have high blood pressure, knee problems and Type 2 Diabetes.

Alison Oliver MBE, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust, said: “Whilst exercise alone is not the silver bullet solution to this crisis, it is compounded by the fact that our children are simply not active enough to remain happy and healthy. There is a compelling evidence base for more play and sport in children’s lives. Unhappy, unhealthy children don’t learn effectively. If children don’t learn, they don’t achieve their potential in life and we don’t have a society fit for the future.”

The charity is now urging parents and schools to make the #PledgeToPlay in the upcoming National School Sports Week, emphasising the Chief Medical Officers’ minimum guidance of 60 minutes of vigorous activity a day. However, research conducted by the Youth Sport Trust indicates many parents underestimate this amount by 50%.

The Youth Sport Trust, founded in 1995, works with around 20,000 schools to empower young people and equip educators to transform lives. Its aim is to create a future where every child enjoys the life-changing benefits of play and sport. National School Sports Week runs from Monday 19 to Sunday 25 June 2023 and is themed around ‘playing for fun, playing for 60’.

The UK Chief Medical Officer recommends that children and young people should aim for an average of at least 60 minutes of moderate or vigorous intensity physical activity a day across the week. Read more about the guidelines on the NHS website here.

The Youth Sport Trust is calling on schools, families, businesses and supportive partners to sign-up and participate in the National School Sports Week campaign at

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