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According to new guidance published by the Government, it is time to tackle overeating from birth, to make sure children get the best start in life.

The guidance is the first to approach the subject in more than 20 years, as noted on BBC online. Insight from the report suggests that three-quarters of UK babies and toddlers may be eating more calories than they should. The same proportion weighed more than the ideal weight for their age, when plotted on growth charts.

FitPro’s resident dietitian, Linia Patel, said, “After 20 years of no guidance on infant feeding, this is a big step in the right direction. Childhood obesity is now a big public health issue that needs to be addressed, and helping our children have the best start is one vital way to help address obesity.

“The guidance covers recommendations on breastfeeding, weaning, allergens, and intake of foods high in fat and sugar. Of course, there are many other issues to be addressed as part of the bigger picture, such as population-specific guidelines, further details on weaning practices (i.e., the context of baby-led weaning), as well as monitoring overfeeding, and overweight prevalence.”

The data comes from the Infant Feeding Survey and the Diet and Nutrition Survey of Infants and Young Children (2010, 2011).

Professor Mary Fewtrell from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health said to BBC online, “The prevalence of overfeeding and overweight infants should be monitored and addressed.”

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