Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-09-24-Speech-3-426"

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"Overweight and obesity are problems which have reached epidemic proportions in recent times due to their negative impact on human health. World Health Organisation data reveals that 50% of Europe’s population is overweight or obese. The fact that over 5 million children are obese and 22 million children are overweight is cause for particular concern. The numbers are increasing at an alarming rate. Obesity is one of the main causes of mortality and chronic disease such as Type 2 diabetes, circulatory disorders, hypertension, heart attacks and certain types of cancer. The treatment of obesity is very costly indeed. It represents some 7% of national healthcare budgets in the Union and up to 6% of government expenditure on healthcare. In order to combat this problem, European consumers should have better access to information on the best food sources so that they can choose an appropriate diet. Food should be clearly labelled. Certain ingredients such as artificial trans-fatty acids and trans isomers should be taken out of use. It is also important to bear in mind that television advertising affects the so-called short-term consumption habits of children between 2 and 11 years of age. It has a negative impact on the development of eating habits. Combating overweight, particularly amongst children, should be a priority at international, European, national and local level."@en1

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