Australian Bureau of Statistics
4338.0 - Profiles of Health, Australia, 2011-13
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/10/2012 First Issue
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Healthy habits formed early in life can follow on throughout childhood, adolescence and into adulthood. Conversely, less than healthy habits established in childhood may continue into adulthood, increasing a person's associated health risks such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. The following commentary discusses risk factors for children aged 5-17 years.
In 2011-12, 25.3% of children aged 5-17 years were overweight or obese, comprised of 17.7% overweight and 7.6% obese. The proportion of girls who were overweight or obese was higher than that of boys (27.1% compared with 23.6%). There has been no change in the proportion of children who were overweight or obese between 2007-08 and 2011-12.
Footnote(s): (a) Based on Body Mass Index for children whose height and weight was measured.
Source(s): Australian Health Survey: First Results
Good nutrition can have many positive health benefits. In 2011-12, 95.3% of children aged 5-11 years were reported to usually meet their recommended daily intake of 1 serve of fruit, compared to only 20.3% of children aged 12-17 years (for whom 3 serves of fruit per day are considered adequate).
Younger children were also more likely to meet the age-specific guidelines for vegetable intake than older children: 56.1% of children aged 5-7 years met the recommended intake of at least 2 serves per day, 30.8% of children aged 8-11 years met the recommended intake of at least 3 serves while 15.2% of children aged 12-17 years met the recommended intake of at least 4 serves of vegetables.
Milk is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, particularly calcium, which is important for forming strong and healthy bones. In 2011-12, almost all children (97.9%) aged 5-17 years consumed milk; the majority of children consumed cow's milk (95.7%), followed by soy milk (1.7%).
Previous results for children's risk factors
National Health Survey 2007–08, 2004–05, 2001, 1995
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey, 2004-05
Other articles on children's risk factors
The Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, 2010: Mothers' and children's health
Australian Social Trends, Sep 2009: Children who are overweight or obese
Health of Children in Australia: A Snapshot, 2004-05
Health of Children, 2004
Overweight and obesity |Tobacco smoking | Alcohol consumption | Daily intake of fruit and vegetables | Exercise
These documents will be presented in a new window.
This page last updated 25 January 2013