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Childhood obesity – bold and brave action

The UK Government’s Health Committee recently released their report “Childhood obesity – bold and brave action”. It calls for urgent action on treating obesity and it’s consequences, which costs the government £5.1bn every year, and has suggested a number of recommendations.

New UK Government on childhood obesity

Did you know that one fifth of children are overweight or obese when they begin school, and this figure increases to one third by the time they leave primary school?

The report goes onto highlight that the most deprived children are twice as likely to be obese than the least deprived, therefore childhood obesity is a significant contributor to health inequality.

Recommended actions to tackle childhood obesity

The report calls on a number of areas where further action is required from the top to reach the most vulnerable individuals:

⦁ Tougher controls on price promotions and advertising of unhealthy food and drink
⦁ Taxation of high sugar and fat food
⦁ Product reformulation of foods high in fat, salt and sugar
⦁ Nutrition standards in schools (which is already happening – see Scottish school nutrition regulations)
⦁ Greater powers for local authorities to help families affected by obesity
⦁ Improved education and information on the importance of a balanced diet

This is just a quick summary of some of the recommendations and for anyone that is interested in the detail you can download the report for some bedtime reading.

Our thoughts to tackle childhood obesity

At Eat Balanced, if we were to support one of these initiatives it would be product reformulation of high fat/salt/sugar food and drinks. We aim to improve children’s nutrition by reinventing kid’s favourite foods, like pizza, into tasty, balanced meals.

What do you think?

If you’re involved in the food and drink industry, we’d love to hear you’re thoughts @eatbalanced and tell us what how you would go about tacking childhood obesity.

Becoming a Good Food Nation – Scottish Government

The Scottish Food Commission states that making Scotland a Good Food Nation is a challenging task, however, if we all strive to achieve this common goal, the result will follow shortly.

2015 was the Year of Scotland Food and Drink and Scotland presents the world with undeniable high quality produce due to our clear waters, fresh air and rich soil.

The main question is; why when Scotland’s local products are so fresh and delicious is the nation’s health suffering?

Consequently, health is one of the core values outlined by Good Food Nation in addition to prosperity and sustainability. The main idea of the campaign is to significantly improve our food culture by 2025.

We summarised several steps set by Scottish Food Commission:

1. Educating consumers: making them interested in fresh and local food that is really good for them.

2. Motivating the public sector to be an example, as it has a huge influence. For instance, schools providing tasty and balanced meals for kids. It goes without saying that educational institutes are one of the most important targets as it might take a generation to alter the perception of healthy food and transfer ignorance to knowledge.

3. Making sure that people have easy access to good food.  We can start this for ourselves and our families by focusing on eating a balanced diet. However, as more families eat outside of the home, the key would to make healthy food available in places like leisure centres, stadiums, and other family venues at an affordable price.

5. Supporting local food and drink businesses to make Scottish products even better!

6. Making food companies an appealing place to work by offering more work experience and apprenticeships.

7. Making the most of the campaign: promoting  Scottish food and drink internationally, let it be one of the reasons to visit our beautiful country.

Let us know your thoughts and suggestions, we are always open for conversation @eatbalanced or get in touch with us!

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