Up to 20 per cent of children could be overweight, Birmingham warned

New data has sparked fears of an obesity epidemic in Birmingham and experts believe that up to 20 per cent of children are overweight.

According to mirror.co.uk, the data, which was obtained via a Freedom of Information request, showed that six Birmingham pupils all around the age of ten weighed over 19st each. The largest child was almost 23st and yet was only ten years-old.

Furthermore, almost 50 other children weighed 16st or more by the time they reached the age of 11 and experts are deeply concerned about the health problems obesity could cause.

Birmingham City Council cabinet member for health and well-being, Councillor Steve Bedser, said that tackling childhood obesity was of utmost importance.

"The statistic of one in four ten-year-olds being obese is the single scariest thing I know about Birmingham," he commented. "This is a national crisis and failing to tackle the obesity time bomb is not an option. If the rising tide of childhood obesity is not reversed, the implications are stark for individuals, for neighbourhoods, for families and for the public sector," reports independent.co.uk.

This year, only 59.4 per cent of children in the city were measured in at a healthy weight. Moreover, 2.1 per cent were underweight and a huge 38.5 per cent were recorded as overweight or obese.