Poor nutrition threatening Australia’s future generations

Richard Laycock 4 December 2017

returning to work after your baby

Poor nutrition and lifestyle choices in the early years have long term effects on a child's health.

Experts are warning that children born today are at higher risk of a range of health problems not faced by previous generations.

“We know that during pregnancy and throughout infancy, there are critical times when a foetus and baby are particularly susceptible to the influence of nutrition – both good and poor nutritional intake,” said Early Life Nutrition Coalition chairperson Professor Peter Davies, Director of the Children’s Nutrition Research Centre at the University of Queensland.

The coalition warns that poor nutrition and lifestyle in the first 1,000 days of a child's life can influence its propensity for developing a range of ailments from obesity to cardiovascular disease in later life.

“For many of these diseases, it’s not genes, but environmental factors and nutritional intake in the earliest stages of life that are most influential,” Davies said.

Worse still, Davies warns that these health and lifestyle choices may be affecting your child's life-expectancy.

“Too often, attention to long-term health starts too late in life when it may be too late to make a significant impact. We now know that setting the foundation for good health starts well before a child is born and that in most cases it begins before they are even conceived,” Professor Davies added.

Obesity is a huge problem in Australia. Roughly 65% of Australian adults and 25% of Aussie children are either obese or overweight.

If you're hoping to get your weight under control, find out how you can use your health insurance to find discounts on gym memberships and other weight management programs.

Compare your health insurance options today

Latest health headlines

Picture: Shutterstock

Compare health insurance on finder.com.au

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, read the PDS or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.
Ask a question