Australians politicians must act quickly to combat the rise of obesity and its life-threatening disease consequences, and the global climate changes' great threats to health, based on a letter published in the Medical Journal of Australia, a publication of the Australian Medical Association.
The endorsement of the letter came from 300 medical and health practitioners, which include 40 professors of medicines and health sciences. According to Prof Garry Egger, of Southern Cross University and his colleagues that had co-written the letter, industrialization has made it possible for big health gains.
However, we are now seeing the emergence of health risks caused by excesses in market-driven consumerism, energy-subsidized exertion-free living, an over-arching preoccupation with gross domestic product and population growths, said Prof Egger and his co-authors.
A proposal to the Australian government, to organize a high-level ongoing forum to discuss post-growth alternatives to unsustainable, consumption-based growth which is the economic norm today and also to establish a multidisciplinary team responsible to develop the Australian population policy, has been made.
They also said that, We must seek a sustainable economic system and stable population size that ensures prosperity without endangering both health and environmental quality.
In reference to the health profession's experience with the smoking-disease debate, Prof Egger stated that health experts realized the damaging effect posed to the health of the population, brought on by the delay of the governments in putting their acknowledged health risks into effective public health interventions.
Egger said that one in three children born today will become obese and/or diabetic in their lifetime, and the population at large will face increasing health risks from climate change.
With climate change, we lack the luxury of time - and the stakes are much higher. Hence, a prudent, precautionary strategy to tackle the big issues is essential.