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Children in Iceland increasingly overweight

A report on the health status in Iceland, introduced at parliament last week, revealed that the number of overweight children and teenagers in Iceland is increasing and the situation is expected to worsen.

According to the report, conducted by a special committee appointed by the prime minister in 2005, 23 percent of nine-year-olds in the capital region are overweight, compared to two percent in 1938. Bladid reports.

“Parents do not spend enough time with their children and their health suffers as a result. The children decide for themselves for how long they sit in front of the TV and what they eat,” said Thorgrímur Thráinsson, the head of the committee.

Thráinsson suggested starting a cooperation between kindergartens and the Sport Instructor Academy. Students at the academy could teach sport to pre-schoolers, so by the time the children enter elementary school they consider exercise a natural thing.

A sport instructor has worked at the kindergarten Heilsuleikskólinn Urdarhóli in Reykjavík suburb Kópavogur for seven years, and research has shown that children who go there tend to practice sport later in life.

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