Cebu has highest number of underweight children
Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) - March 5, 2015 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu has the highest number of underweight and severely underweight pre-school children among the four provinces in Central Visayas for 2014.

Based on the data released by the National Nutrition Council-7 from January to March in 2014, Cebu had 321,150 children ages 0 to 71 months and 271,936 of the number were weighed. The NNC conducts a weigh-in once a year.

Of the 271,936 children weighed, 244,712 kids had a normal weight; 4,037 kids were overweight; 17,921 kids were underweight and 4,266 kids were severely underweight.

Bohol had 136,871 kids that had normal weight; 1,018 kids were overweight; 6,278 kids were underweight; and 1,020 kids were severely underweight. Around 145,187 children were weighed in the province.

In Negros Oriental, of the 110,074 pre-schoolers, 101,382 weighed normal; 1,045 kids were overweight; 6,177 kids were underweight; and 1,470 kids were severely underweight.

For Siquijor, of the 9,123 kids weighed, 8,530 had a normal weight; 118 were overweight; 418 were underweight and 57 were severely underweight.

In line with the obesity and underweight problem, NNC-7, together with the Media Information Network and Development-7 (MIND), formulated communication plans for a year-long nutrition advocacy program in a bid to address the growing nutrition problems in Central Visayas.

Members of MIND-7, who are mostly members of mainstream media and online community, came up with an overall communication objective which is “to encourage people to practice proper nutrition and exercise to achieve optimal health.”

The group tackles three key messages, first that “overnutrition is a risk factor for non-communicable diseases, but it can be corrected through proper nutrition and healthy lifestyle.”

According to the group, “obesity can lead to degradation to the quality of life which can lead to premature death,” and “overnutrition degrades the quality of life.”

In order to correct these nutritional deficiencies, the group came up with solutions such as increasing ones physical activities, limit television and Internet exposure, knowing ones food portions and burning excess calories.

The group further emphasized the crucial role of parents in the overall nutrition of their children, especially the young ones.

The group, likewise, emphasized that parents should be mindful and must insist on feeding their children a balance meal. — (FREEMAN)

BOHOL CEBU CENTRAL VISAYAS CHILDREN FOR SIQUIJOR IN NEGROS ORIENTAL KIDS MEDIA INFORMATION NETWORK AND DEVELOPMENT NATIONAL NUTRITION COUNCIL UNDERWEIGHT
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