A study into the pros and cons of a possible ‘sugar tax’ claims food adverts can affect children’s diets
A major government report has identified specific food commercials which it says affect children’s eating habits.
One they’ve highlighted is for Coco Pops.
Dr Alison Tedstone, from Public Health England, says current regulation on junk food adverts targeted at children doesn’t go far enough.
She said: “The evidence is that things like those Coco Pops monkeys do engage children and affect fast food preferences and choice.”
She added: “The higher the tax increase, the greater the effect.”
The study calls for the introduction of a tax on sugary foods and drinks and a crackdown on marketing unhealthy products aimed at children.
However, Prime Minister David Cameron has dismissed the idea for a sugar tax, saying that he “doesn’t see a need” for it.
Health experts are urging the Government to halve the current recommended intake of free sugars in food and drink.
This would mean that free sugars would account for no more than 5% of daily energy consumption, the equivalent of five sugar cubes for children aged seven to 10.
Father of four Jamie Oliver has asked David Cameron to be “bold and brave” in tackling obesity.
The celebrity chef has praised the study, saying: “There has never been a better time than now. Let’s tackle this like parents not politicians.”
For advice on monitoring your kids’ diet and exercise, go to: http://www.nhs.uk/change4life