The key players in the weight-loss industry can be contributing to the obesity crisis, rather than help in solving for it, a leading dietician said.
During the inaugural Australian Obesity Summit which took place in Sydney on March 29-30, chief executive of the Dieticians Association of Australia Claire Hewat said that more funding for obesity crisis prevention is needed to begin with the $58 billion burden on the current health system.
Ms Hewat recommended that the Therapeutic Goods Administration should take on a major role in administering weight-loss products such as meal supplements, teas, pills and herbal products.
'There are some dangerous things out there, and if people don't start to lose weight and keep with their current lifestyle, they will go through this yo-yo cycle. Hewat told AAP.
Data by the Australian Bureau of Statistics for the 2007-2008 National Health Survey showed that a quarter of Australian adults were obese - up from 19 percent during 1995 - and another 37 percent were overweight.
There's always an attitude of Well, it does not appear to do any harm, so let's just focus on the dangerous stuffs, said Hewat. This is about people's longevity, and that's why it is really important that we don't let this go unregulated.
Ms Hewat said that it's about time that weight-loss companies enter a new level of study and analysis for new products that will put a stop to the obesity crisis in the state.
However, representatives from the food and beverage industry told the Summit that self-regulation has led to significant progress, while Government representatives are now implementing standards to impose on food companies a proper promotion for healthy eating.