The unhealthy lifestyle of children today is putting them at risk of dying at a younger age than their parents, according to a Heart and Stroke Foundation report on the health of Ontario's Kids.

Released in Ottawa yesterday, findings from the report show that children between the ages of six and 12 years old face an unhealthy childhood due to a lack of physical activity and poor eating habits.

If the situation doesn’t improve soon, this generation of children — through no fault of their own — will not live as long as their parents due to life-threatening illnesses such as high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

“This report should serve as a wake-up call that the health of our children is not making the grade,” said Dr. Andrew Pipe, chief of the division of Prevention and Rehabilitation at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute.

“Despite mandatory nutrition labelling and a new edition of Canada’s Food Guide, we’re not seeing bigger gains in healthy eating.”

Ten years ago, 19 per cent of children were meeting the daily recommended minimum of fruit and vegetables. Today, that number is down to 12 per cent.