The Swedish Government, alarmed by deteriorating health of the population, called on The Swedish National Food Administration and the Swedish National Institute of Public Health to draft an action plan for better health. The plan was released on 9/2 and is available in English summary on the link below.
The findings in summary:
- Swedes are increasingly overweight. Over half of the men and a third of the women are overweight or obese and 15?20 per cent of children are overweight.
- Eighty per cent eat too much fat and half eat too much sugar..
- Around half of all adults exercise less than the recommended amount and 14 per cent of the population are more or less sedentary in their spare time.
- Only 26 out of a total of 290 municipalities had an action plan for physical activity and only 13 had one for healthy dietary habits.
Society needs to consciously create an environment that promotes and facilitates everyday physical activity in all population groups.
The report’s 79 specific recommendations cover
- Redesigning the local environment to encourage activity
- Changes in education to spread more knowledge about activity and nutrition habits
- Requiring the medical and health services to place more emphasis on nutrition and activity
- Increasing training in nutrition and physical activity
- Development of the health promoting workplace including certification
- Food sector changes including labeling and supply management
- More involvement from sports associations
The attidude “we must get people to move about more” will be soon outdated as supplies of oil dwindle and tranport costs rise. We would rather see a collaboration across departments to address “planning to reduce mechanised transport and make better use of walking” which is a far more sustainable approach – and more natural. See for example the report on RADIALITY – city planning so everyone walks everywhere. http://avbp.net/Radiality_report2.pdf