Anti-obesity drive has a French connection
A FRENCH-STYLE anti-obesity drive is to be tested in eight areas across Scotland.
The pilot scheme to tackle childhood obesity will see communities taking part in walking clubs, "healthy gala days" and breast-feeding support groups, it was announced yesterday.
It comes after the success of a programme in France, where obesity in children dropped by almost a quarter. Healthy Weight Communities will be trialled in eight towns, villages and cities.
In the French town of Fleurbaix, levels of childhood obesity fell from 11.4 per cent to 8.8 per cent in eight years by following a healthy weight programme.
In other areas of France, childhood obesity continued to rise.
Public health minister Shona Robison said: "Like their French inspirations, our Healthy Weight Communities will bring whole towns together to get more active and eat more healthily."
Tam Fry, chairman of the Child Growth Foundation, welcomed the scheme. "These projects have shown that they really can lower obesity," he said.
The Healthy Weight Communities, backed by 1.4 million in government funding are: Armadale and Blackridge in West Lothian; Catrine in East Ayrshire; Barrhead in East Renfrewshire; Dumfries; Dundee; Priesthill and Househillwood in Glasgow; Stevenston in North Ayrshire and Viewpark in Lanarkshire.
Yesterday, Ms Robison also launched a consultation on diabetes. Obesity is thought to cause nearly half the cases of Type 2 diabetes in Scotland.
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