Climate Change and Poor Diet Affect Our Children, UN Confirms

Climate change and poor diet threaten our children with an "immediate threat."

Climate Change and Poor Diet Affect Our Children, UN Confirms
Climate Change

Climate Change and Poor Diet Affect Our Children, UN Confirms


Climate change and poor diet threaten our children, and we are lagging protecting them from these potential threats. A recent report from the UN published on Wednesday warns that every child is under "immediate threat."

The research includes 40 adolescent health experts from different parts of the world. They confirm that not a single country has adequate protection systems to protect the next generation from potential threats—the threats caused by processed foods, carbon emissions, and the destruction of nature.

The developed nations are becoming wealthier by emitting tons of carbons. They are growing economically but on the price of endangering the future of the children. Besides threatening the future of all children, wealthy nations add health danger to them. As a result, deadly heatwaves and tropical diseases spread are on the rise.

UNICEF and the WHO took significant initiatives in commissioning the report. The study report hints that the marketing of harmful foods like high-level fat and sugar-laden ones, alcohol, and tobacco plays an adverse role in children’s healthy development. Instead, advertising poses an immense threat to them.

Anthony Costello from the University College London says, "The big message is that no single country is protecting children's health today and for their future." He is the Director of the Institute for Global Health and a professor of International Child Health.

According to him, children’s lungs are being damaged as the air pollution level has increased. It is happening too fast to cope with. They only get a limited time to sort this problem.

He also adds that they have the solutions, but lack of political leadership is on their way to implement the solutions. 

Researchers published the report on the medical journal, The Lancet. This report enlists 180 countries and ranks them based on nutrition rates, child survival, and education.

As per the mentioned criteria, countries like Chad and the Central African Republic topped the list because they are less-developed nations. They performed poorly in comparison to the developed countries like the Netherlands and Norway, who remain last on this list.

Likewise, we see an estimated reversal of order in the list when the team focused on per capita carbon emissions. It means the developed countries came up and the less-developed went down. 

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the WHO, says, "The world's decision-makers are failing today's children and youth: failing to protect their health, failing to protect their rights, and failing to protect their planet."


Obesity Increases Eleven Times

Malnutrition and obesity threaten our children. The team points out that nearly 250 million children age under five in middle-income and low-income nations face malnutrition.  

In the case of developed countries, a dramatic rise in obesity is evident. The number of obese affected children is now 124 million that is eleven times higher than that of conducted first time back in 1975. 

The harmful effects of advertising on children are also highlighted in this report. In some countries, children see 30,000 adverts on television yearly. Although there are regulations for the industries, they do not abide by the rules. In Australia, alcohol adverts appear 51 million times when any sports program telecast.

Costello says, "Industry regulation has failed. And the reality could be much worse still: we have few figures about the huge expansion of social media advertising and algorithms aimed at our children."

The authors urge that carbon emission needs to cut down by the governments as per the Paris act set climate goals. Further enactment by the regulatory commissions is also required to stop harmful marketing. 


As the current emission rate is going on at such a high speed, by 2100, the Earth’s temperature will rise more than 3C. This will affect children with devastating consequences in the form of heatwaves, malnutrition, disease, and rising sea levels.