News

Gladstone kids fat-busting program ending as funds dry up

QUT Senior Research Fellow Dr Helen Vidgen from QUT's School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences is looking at the diet of children and what a healthy lunch box should look like.
QUT Senior Research Fellow Dr Helen Vidgen from QUT's School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences is looking at the diet of children and what a healthy lunch box should look like. Erika Fish

A THREE-YEAR program dedicated to helping Gladstone kids and families fight the bulge ends on December 31.

In the three years, the Parenting, Eating and Activity for Child Health program has worked with 36 Gladstone children from 31 families.

The State Government funded the Queensland University of Technology service to help treat and manage obesity in our region and the rest of the state.

QUT senior research fellow Dr Helen Vidgen said it was sad to see the end of the evidence-based, parent-led healthy lifestyle program.

Dr Vigden said the program's overall results would help influence the government's future plan for reducing obesity.

"There is fairly good agreement on what a childhood obesity management program should have in it," Dr Vidgen said.

"It should talk about nutrition and physical activity and it should look at encouraging behaviour change and involve different health professionals and focus on families."

Research shows about 900,000 - or 23.7% - of Aussie children aged 5-18 years are overweight or obese.

This figure is expected to hit than 1.2 million children - or 27.35% - by 2025.

Dr Vigden said making a program like PEACH widely available through the public health system would help reduce these statistics.

"Families who took part tell us that they made lifestyle behaviour changes after completing the program,  including introducing daily walks with their children, adding more vegetables to school lunchboxes, changing portion sizes, involving children in dinner preparation and reducing the family's screen time," she said.

Queensland chief health officer Dr Mark Elcocksaid PEACH would be evaluated by year's end.

"Any future funding will be based on this assessment," Dr Elcock said.

"The Department of Health funds and supports a number of programs that promote physical activity to children.

These programs are part of a broader strategy to achieve the Advancing health 2026 vision of reducing childhood obesity by 10%."

PEACH's overall outcomes will be discussed at the 2016 Annual Scientific Meeting of the Australian & New Zealand Obesity Society in Brisbane from October 19-21.

 

Brisbane's Dan and Carly Dryden and their two daughters, Ava, 8, and Sienna, 5, completed the PEACH face-to-face program a year ago.
Brisbane's Dan and Carly Dryden and their two daughters, Ava, 8, and Sienna, 5, completed the PEACH face-to-face program a year ago. tony phillips

Family's feeling PEACHy after life-changing program

THE Drydens were among the 919 Queensland families to take part in the Parenting, Eating and Activity for Child Health program over the past three years.

Each PEACH program offers 10 group work sessions delivered in local community centres over six months.

Parents and carers meet in one group to learn about healthy living options while their children meet in another group for a fun physical activities.

Parents also receive a handbook packed with information, goal-setting tools and interactive activities that cover a range of topics including healthy lifestyle behaviour; relationships with food and eating; changing family lifestyle behaviours; nutrition skills; and affordable eating at home and when away.

PEACH facilitators provide individualised family support.

Parents Dan and Carly Dryden and their daughters, Ava, 8, and Sienna, 5, joined PEACH to ensure they would not become part of Australia's obesity problem.

Mr Dryden said the program set them up for a lifetime of healthy behaviour.

"The program and keeping a food diary reinforced to us that our eating habits were essentially healthy, but we learnt about the right portion sizes and that what we needed was to be more physically active," he said.

"We bought the girls a basketball hoop for Christmas and we encourage them to play and be active, and we do things together as a family, like go for bushwalks.

"Balancing the amount of time spent in front of screens was also a key for us, whatever type of screen it is - phone, iPad or TV.

"And Carly and I learnt that we have to be better role models for our kids, to lead by example."  

- ARM NEWSDESK

BY THE NUMBERS

1122 primary school-aged children from 919 families enrolled in the 105 PEACH face-to-face programs organised across Queensland. 

These groups ran at 49 different locations, from the Gold Coast to Cairns in the north and out west to Longreach.

An online format of the program was specially developed so families who were unable to attend face-to-face groups could also access PEACH.  

A total of 287 families with 380 primary school-aged children enrolled in PEACH Online.

Topics:  health helen vidgen obesity peach queensland university of technology


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

REVEALED: Noosa schools OP results are in

Sunshine Beach State High School Year 12 students Amy Bennie, Alex Fitzgerald and Maddy Wilson, with deputy principal Paul Fitzgerald, were excited to learn their school has the best OP scores on the Sunshine Coast.

Noosa state school tops Sunshine Coast OP scores

Show love for Cooroy Originals to help secure its future

MOVE IT: Cooroy Originals organisers need the community to get behind the music event.

Head to the Cooroy Originals this weekend for some great vibes

Local Partners

MakiMoto serves up flavour and style

IF YOUR taste buds are chasing an authentic Japanese food experience, the new MakiMoto Noosa gourmet Japanese restaurant in Hastings St is worth a visit.

Stroll down memory lane of hits with Aussie music royalty

John Farnham will headline the Red Hot Summer Tour.

John Farnham and Daryl Braithwaite headline Red Hot Summer Tour

Head out to a live music gig this weekend

MUSIC ENERGY: All Strings Attached is coming to Solbar, Maroochydore, tonight.

Head out to a live music gig this weekend

10 Things To Do to keep the whole family amused

Face painting at the Mooloolaba Collective Markets.

No excuses for playing couch potato this week

Living End, Grinspoon stars hit stage for American Idiot

GET a sneak peek at Green Day's American Idiot The Musical as we go behind the scenes to meet the stars at a QPAC rehearsal.

Samuel L Jackson dismisses La La Land ahead of Oscars

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a scene from the movie La La Land.

Hollywood actor and Oscars voter says Denzel should win top gong

Live performance of Sci-fi classic to open Science Festival

Qld Symphony Orchestra perform live to 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Festival will host A Live Presentation of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Stroll down memory lane of hits with Aussie music royalty

John Farnham will headline the Red Hot Summer Tour.

John Farnham and Daryl Braithwaite headline Red Hot Summer Tour

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

Reginald VelJohnson, left, and Darius McCrary arrive at the TV Land Awards on Sunday, April 19, 2009 in Universal City, Calif.

Darius McCrary has been accused of child abuse

Show love for Cooroy Originals to help secure its future

MOVE IT: Cooroy Originals organisers need the community to get behind the music event.

Head to the Cooroy Originals this weekend for some great vibes

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

REVEALED: Coast's new 4500-seat convention centre

VISION: An artist impression of the new CBD.

$20 million mega-library also in the works for new city centre

New CBD to become council HQ in massive move

SHIFT: Sunshine Coast Council will have a strong presence in the new Maroochydore CBD.

Council looking to shift bulk resources into new city centre

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Giving takes many forms

SENSE OF BELONGING: Early morning along Noosa River.

Sense of community pays us back in many ways

Luxury on a higher level

Chic Noosa sub-penthouse apartment steps away from the expected

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!