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8 December 2016
While figures show people in all age groups tend to consume a lot more added sugar than is advised, it is teenagers who consume most – with 42% of their daily added sugar coming from soft drinks.
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The double burden of childhood obesity and undernutrition have reached epidemic levels worldwide. We need to act now to secure a happier, healthier world for our children and for future generations. Campaigning for wider change across the food system is something that affects each and every one of us. We all have a role to play in making change happen.
Today, the double burden of malnutrition, which includes those who are obese and overweight as well as those who are undernourished, has reached epidemic levels worldwide, and this is particularly true in developing countries. In fact, obesity and undernutrition can often co-exist in the same country, community, and even the same family. Here are the facts: 159 million children under the age of five are too short for their age and 50 million don’t weigh enough for their height, while 41 million kids under five are overweight – none of these children are growing healthily. Children with well-developed brains and bodies have better life chances: they live longer and healthier lives, they perform better at school, and they grow into more productive and happier adults. Together as individuals, businesses and governments we need to change this and put the nutrition and health of our children first.
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The UK now joins Mexico, France and South Africa in implementing a tax on sugary drinks. In the UK, this will generate half a billion pounds that will go straight into schools, invested into sports and breakfast clubs. Jamie has welcomed the news about a levy on sugary drinks in the UK, but believes that this is only one part of a multi-layered solution to a complex obesity problem and hopes that this will be addressed in the UK Government’s childhood obesity strategy, due to be released in summer 2016. Read the answers to your questions on the sugary drinks tax here.
Together with medical experts and professionals, Jamie has drafted a six-point plan to tackle childhood obesity in the UK. The levy on sugary drinks was just one of a range of proposed policies, initiatives, incentives and community-based interventions, which together create a powerful tool for change. Jamie has sent his proposal to PM David Cameron and believes we must keep putting pressure on the Government to consider these measures and be bold once again in their own strategy. You can read more about Jamie’s proposed Childhood Obesity Strategy here.
Jamie has created 10 simple, delicious and nutritious recipes, especially for the Food Revolution. Together these 10 recipes can teach us all the skills we need to feed ourselves and our families good, nutritious food for years to come. Start small, give the recipes a try and don’t worry, they don’t have to be perfect!