Parents urged to cut sugar in battle of bulge

HEALTH PROMOTION: Health bosses are promoting a new campaign to cut back on sugar intake to help ease the childhood obesity problem.
HEALTH PROMOTION: Health bosses are promoting a new campaign to cut back on sugar intake to help ease the childhood obesity problem.
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PARENTS in Sunderland are being urged to cut back on their child’s sugar intake to reduce the risk of obesity.

National Child Measurement Programme figures show that 36 per cent of the region’s children in their last year of primary school are already overweight or obese.

A Change4Life campaign, launched today by Public Health England (PHE), encourages parents to cut down the amount of sugar their children consume by making one or more simple swaps to their diets.

Dr Roberta Marshall, director of PHE’s North East Centre, said: “This campaign is about taking small steps to address this.

“We know from past campaigns that making simple swaps works and makes a real difference. This year we wanted to be even more single-minded in our approach, which is why we are focusing on sugar alone.

“The family challenge highlights that simple swaps could lead to big changes if sustained over time and we’d urge North East parents to try one more simple swap in January and beyond.”

The campaign recommends four simple sugar swaps: Breakfast swap – change sugary cereal for plain cereal; drink swap – have sugar free on non-added sugar beverages; after-school swap – snack on a fruit teacake instead of a muffin; pudding swap – a low fat yoghurt instead of ice cream.