BETTER FOOD: Dr Gaston Boulanger from BITS Medical Centre says there is a lack of healthy food choices for children at schools.
BETTER FOOD: Dr Gaston Boulanger from BITS Medical Centre says there is a lack of healthy food choices for children at schools. Christopher Chan GLA281211BITS

Boyne GP calls for junk food ban at school tuckshops

A BOYNE Island doctor has called on schools to ban soft drinks and potato chips to help tackle Gladstone's obesity problem.

BITS Medical Centre owner Dr Gaston Boulanger said the sale of chips, soft drinks and flavoured milk at school tuck shops made Gladstone one of the fattest regions in Queensland.

Fitness program could help Gladstone in battle of the bulge

"They need to look at educating children from an early age about making healthy choices," Dr Boulanger said.

"Having vending machines in schools is just wrong."

The claims came as Diabetes Queensland revealed that 66% of Central Queenslanders were in an unhealthy weight range.

"Obesity is a big problem and there is a lack of healthy choices in Gladstone."

The research also found two-thirds of Queensland GPs spent almost half their time treating obesity-related conditions and illnesses.

Dr Boulanger said a vast majority of his patients were overweight or obese.

"I wasn't shocked by the results at all," Dr Boulanger said. "Obesity is a big problem and there is a lack of healthy choices in Gladstone."

The report also quizzed GPs on the kind of social policy they'd like to see adopted to address obesity.

One idea involved offering free or subsidised gym memberships to those battling the bulge.

Dr Boulanger said while it was important to exercise, free gym memberships wouldn't solve the problem.

"Exercise is very important and is good for everyone, but we need to focus on healthy eating," he said.

"If kids learn at a very young age (about healthy food) then they'll be making good choices for the rest of their lives."

Do you think unhealthy food should be banned from tuckshops?

This poll ended on 18 December 2013.

Current Results

Yes. The more that can be done to help kids the better

23%

No. Kids need to learn how to make good food choices themselves

21%

Yes. We should be setting a good example

28%

No. It's up to parents to teach their kids about healthy food

26%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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