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Swap ice-cream for yoghurt: Parents urged to cut down kids’ sugar intake with Change4Life campaign

change4life sugar healthy eating

In a new campaign launched by the Public Health For England’s Change4Life, parents are being asked to significantly reduce the amount of sugar their children are consuming.

Sugar in children’s diets

In a recent survey, it was found that two thirds of parents are worried about the amount of sugar in their children’s diets. Almost half admitted that their kids might be consuming too much. According to the Department of Health Guidelines, added sugars should not exceed more than 10% of your daily intake. However, the government’s scientific advisers asked for this to be lowered to 5% back in early 2014. Statistics show that many children between 4 and 10 are actually consuming up to 50% more than the recommended daily allowance.

Change4life Campaign

National director of health and well-being at PHE Professor Kevin Fenton says: ‘Reducing sugar intake is important for the health of our children both now and in the future. We are all eating too much sugar and the impact this has on our health is evident. This Change4Life campaign is about taking small steps to address this. ‘We know from past campaigns that making simple swaps works and makes a real difference.’

The ‘sugar challenge’

Change4Life’s ‘sugar swap’ campaign offers parents a ‘sugar challenge’ that suggests healthier alternatives to snacks and drinks kids are used to. For example, they suggest swapping soft drinks for milk or water, and urge parents to buy whole-wheat biscuit cereals rather than their sugary counterparts. Research from the University of Reading claims that the average intake of 50 families reduced by 40% when they followed Change4Life’s advice. Dr Daniel Lamport, Research Fellow at the University of Reading and Challenge data collection coordinator, stated: ‘It is fantastic to see that the sugar swaps resulted in a reduction in sugar intake for these families. The University of Reading is delighted to support preventative health campaigns such as this which can help make a real difference to the health of the nation.’

Simple swaps

Meanwhile, founder of Netmums Cathy Court said: ‘We know that mums want to provide a healthy diet for their children but balancing a number of competing priorities, including healthy eating, can be tricky. ‘This research with Netmums showed that sugar consumption is a worry for parents but taking steps to reduce sugar can be really difficult. We hope that these simple sugar swaps from Change4Life will make it easier for parents to reduce their family’s sugar intake.’



About Siobhan Harmer

About Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan Harmer is an English Freelance writer who drinks far too much coffee!!

Website: Siobhan Harmer

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