Widening waistlines have made Rother a ticking timebomb of fat- with almost two thirds of adults now tagged overweight.
Figures released earlier this week show a mammoth 63.9 per cent of adults are considered either overweight or obese – and unless belts tighten, ballooning bellies could have serious implications for the local health service.
People who are overweight or obese have an increased risk of developing type two diabetes, heart disease and certain cancers, while experts warns excess weight can also affect self-esteem and mental health.
Health problems associated with being overweight are said to cost the NHS more than £5billion a year and with East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust already having to cut costs, the prospect is not a welcome one.
Rother’s adult obesity level is roughly on a par with the East Sussex-wide average of 65 per cent. Nearby Eastbourne recorded 64.6 per cent and Hastings 65.3 per cent – both of which fall under the same NHS trust.
Brighton and Hove however was significantly lower, with less than half of adults (49 per cent) labelled overweight.
But Rother’s problems do not end with its overweight adults a separate study has revealed almost one in 10 of the area’s reception class are labelled obese.
The number of reception class pupils (aged 4/5) said to be a healthy weight was 78 per cent. This dipped by year six (aged 10/11) to 66.8 per cent.
Rother’s childhood obesity rates are roughly in line with the East Sussex average. County-wide there are 1,156 reception aged pupils considered obese (8.4 per cent) and 17.1 per cent in year six (2,339).