China Launches Campaign To Control Its People’s Weight

Chinese authorities, including the National Health Commission (NHC) and the ministries of education and civil affairs, have issued a document to launch a three-year campaign on ‘enhancing’ the public’s weight management it said.

According to the document, jointly issued by 16 Chinese departments and organizations that was published on the NHC’s website on Wednesday, from this year on, a series of measures will be taken to see that a supportive environment for weight management is formed in China, and that the public’s awareness and techniques in weight management are significantly improved and healthy lifestyles more widely adopted over the next three years.

It also noted that the abnormal weight status of certain groups of people should be improved over the period.

The document called for efforts to encourage employers to provide infrastructure and other convenience for their employees’ fitness.

The construction of healthy canteens and restaurants should be promoted with the sale of high-salt, high-sugar, and high-fat foods being avoided on campuses, it said, adding that the action plan for improving students’ physical fitness, including measures to ensure they have at least one hour of physical activity both in school and after school every day, should be carried out.

It also emphasized the use of traditional Chinese medicine in the campaign.

A new concept of healthy consumption should be advocated, with accelerated efforts in transforming food processing techniques to focus more on the nutrition element, reasonably reducing the content of oil, salt, and sugar in processed foods.

It requires greater precision in weight management among the public, especially groups such as pregnant women, infants, children and young students, elderly people and people working in certain professions.

Weight levels are believed to be closely related to people’s health, and abnormal weight, particularly overweight and obesity, is a major risk factor for chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

One major objective of weight management is to prevent and control these diseases at the source, and focus more on maintaining people’s health rather than merely treating illnesses, said a statement from the NHC.

However, it also noted that underweight people and those with malnutrition should also be included in the weight management efforts. 

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