Obesity: Health Farms Planned for Fat Children US Firm Plans to Open Pounds 3,000-a-Week `Fat Camps' for Youngsters as Star Who Once Weighed 16st Sheds 20lb
Watson-Smyth, Kate, The Independent (London, England)
HUNDREDS OF overweight children could soon be spending their summer holidays dieting and exercising at American-style health farms.
For nine weeks the children, some as young as seven, will be subjected to an intense exercise regime including aerobics, cycling and swimming and will be restricted to a diet of 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day - most children should eat between 1,750 and 2,000 daily. The course will cost pounds 3,000.
One California-based camp is planning to open in Britain next year as soon as it has found a suitable site. Nancy Lenhart, of the La Jolla weight- loss camp, said the decision followed a significant rise in the number of British parents contacting the so-called fat camps in the US.
"We think a camp like ours will work well. Five years ago it was only Americans but the number of British children coming here to lose weight has been increasing year on year," she said.
Although there are no precise figures on the number of obese British children, a study by Exeter University of 700 children between the ages of 11 and 16 showed that more than 13 per cent of the boys and 9 per cent of the girls were overweight. In America twice as many children - one in five - are officially classed as obese.
Paul Gateley, a lecturer at Leeds Metropolitan University who is doing a PhD on weight loss in children, said most of the American camps were simply run to make money and did not take a scientific approach to helping overweight children.
Mr Gateley, who …
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Publication information: Article title: Obesity: Health Farms Planned for Fat Children US Firm Plans to Open Pounds 3,000-a-Week `Fat Camps' for Youngsters as Star Who Once Weighed 16st Sheds 20lb. Contributors: Watson-Smyth, Kate - Author. Newspaper title: The Independent (London, England). Publication date: September 29, 1998. Page number: 5. © 2009 The Independent - London. Provided by ProQuest LLC. All Rights Reserved.
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