Public Health England says children are becoming anxious and unhappy because of lack of exercise, a poor diet and too much TV-watching.
The Director of Health and Well-being said there was ” a consistent association between behaviour and the impact on well-being”. The dangers for inactive children are both physical and mental.
The British Heart Foundation has gone so far as to warn that this generation of children might die before their parents because of inactivity and poor diet.
There are also links between inactivity and mental and social problems. Activity is associated with better concentration levels , more positive social behaviours such as being kind to classmates, and higher self-esteem.
The more time children spend in front of a TV screen the more prone they are to experiencing social and emotional problems and low self-esteem.
Long hours watching TV or playing computer games “is associated with reduced feelings of social acceptance and increased feelings of loneliness, conduct problems and aggression”. Most of our 11-year old children watch more TV than in other European countries.
The recommendations, timed to coincide with the start of the new school year, has led to accusations of the government adopting a granny state approach. One website for Mums said it would be better if the government gave practical advice rather than being a parental authority.
We all want the best for our kids – including wanting them to be happy and healthy – but some people need to be told!