Childhood obesity

One in ten Luxembourg children overweight

Children in Luxembourg are gaining more weight.  Photo: Shutterstock

Children in Luxembourg are gaining more weight.  Photo: Shutterstock

Nearly one in ten children in Luxembourg are overweight. Though the progression over the years is gradual, it remains an issue that impacts the daily and long-term well-being of children.

According to the EU Action Plan on Childhood Obesity--which ran from 2014 to 2020--being overweight is defined by a child’s body mass index (BMI).

Though there is an improvement in terms of extreme obesity since 2012, the number of overweight children has climbed to more than 9% in the last 8 years. Whether it is a question of nutrition or lack of physical activities has not been mentioned by the health minister Paulette Lenert  (LSAP) in her answer to a parliamentary question.

According to Lenert, an increase in overweight children occurs mainly around the 4th cycle of primary school-- 6.39% in comparison to 3.01% in the first cycle--and the final years of secondary school where around 10.84% are overweight and 7.8% are obese.

However, Lenert doesn’t see the trend as worrying: “There has been a light increase over the last ten years in childhood obesity. But it’s not an exponential increase, which is probably thanks to the different actions organised over the last few years in the context of the action plan Gesond iessen, mei beweegen,” an action plan that raises awareness on the topic and organises events on nutrition and physical movement.

For reference, a Eurostat study in July 2021 had found that, though they fared better than the EU average, 48% of Luxembourg’s adults were overweight.