Brent Council launches ‘slash sugar’ campaign
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Almost half of five-year-old children in Brent have rotten or missing teeth caused by too much sugar in the diet.
The shocking statistics have been revealed as part of a ‘slash sugar’ campaign which has been rolled out in the borough by the council this week.
The crusade urges residents to reduce their intake, especially from sugary drinks, and to have no sugar at all on a Tuesday.
This will be done through a social-media website Twitter where residents will be asked to tweet their sugar-free alternatives using the hashtag #sugarfreetuesday.
The council will also engage all schools in the borough and as many businesses as possible to get involved in the campaign.
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A toolkit will be provided as part of the campaign so workplaces, community groups and educational establishments can use them.
The campaign comes as the amount of sugar in the nation’s diets has become a hot topic with the recent publication of Public Health England’s sugar reduction report and celebrity chef Jamie Oliver urging the government to introduce a ‘sugar tax’ as a deterrent.
According to latest figures 46 per cent of five-year-olds in the borough had one or more decayed missing or filled teeth.
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In addition around 11 per cent of four-year-old children are obese with the figure surging to 24 per cent for 10-year-olds.
The borough also has the second highest number of residents who have type-two diabetes which can be prevented through a healthier lifestyle.
Cllr Krupesh Hirani, Brent Council’s cabinet member for public health, said “Our sugar campaign is very timely given the long-awaited publication of the PHE report on sugar reduction and Jamie Oliver’s current campaign.
“It’s a crucial campaign in a borough with some of the worst statistics on child oral health and some of the highest rates of type 2 diabetes in the whole country.
“The messaging and imagery of our Slash Sugar campaign is hard-hitting and we want people to be shocked into changing their behaviour.
“We are committed to supporting people to change their eating behaviour through a series of programmes such as our free healthy eating workshops, the Healthier Catering Commitment for takeaways and our Diabetes Champions.
“We would love to see a movement starting in Brent via #sugarfreetuesday that can sweep across the whole country”.
For more information on the campaign visit brent.gov.uk/healthylives.