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Published Thursday 27 Jul 2017

Thousands of greater Wellington primary school kids are getting their blood pumping, and learning about healthy eating, to avoid obesity.

Thousands of greater Wellington primary school kids are getting their blood pumping, and learning about healthy eating, to avoid obesity.

Around 3000 children from 16 schools participate in Project Energize Wellington, which combines sport and physical activity with nutrition lessons. It is funded by Capital & Coast DHB and delivered by the Heart Foundation.

“Obesity has increased significantly over recent years, and is particularly worrying in children,” said executive director strategy, innovation and performance Rachel Haggerty.

“Obesity is linked to a range of health problems and affects a child’s quality of life, and obese children are more likely will likely to become obese as adults – increasing risk of further problems and reduced life expectancy.”

In 2015/16 over 10 percent of New Zealand children aged two-14 were obese, 21 percent were overweight, and 15 percent of Maori – and 30 percent of Pacific – children were obese.

The DHB also supports Ora Toa PHO to combat childhood obesity in Porirua through physical activity and nutrition programmes for obese Māori and Pacific children and their families.

“Getting children active, and helping them make healthy eating choices, will reduce childhood obesity. We’re excited to support programmes that make a real difference in the lives of our communities.”

Image: The kids from Miramar’s Holy Cross School are among 3000 children across greater Wellington taking part in Project Energize.

Media contact: Chas Te Runa – 027 230 9571