Dr’s demand cigarette-style warnings on sweet packets to help our sugar addicted children

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I remember 2008 when they brought out the law saying that all cigarette packets have to carry graphic imagery and warnings. The theory behind it is that it deters some consumers.

I remember agreeing with it as well; thinking that, after watching my Grandfather cough and splutter his way through 20 a day, it was a good idea.

Well, there are now discussions amongst doctors and dentists who are calling for the same graphic style imagery to be mandatory on all sweet packets. Images could be rotten teeth and fat children alongside messages such as:

Sugar can contribute to obesity and the need for fillings

The fact that the number of adults who smoke has fallen from 21% to 16% since 2008 demonstrates that this kind of warning is working and let’s face it, we do need to start doing something about the high rate of child obesity.

One-third of children aged 2 – 15 are overweight or obese. A THIRD! 1 out of every 3 children are overweight! When I read that I couldn’t believe what I was reading.

In the last 2 years, 34,000 children aged 9 and under have had teeth removed and half of those were under 5. Tooth decay is the number one reason why children are admitted to hospital and need general anaesthetic. Experts say decay is preventable.

This new policy is being discussed at the British Medical Association’s annual conference this week where members are calling for the warnings having been “dismayed” by the astronomical levels of tooth decay amongst our children. They’re also calling for Jeremy Hunt, Health Secretary, to introduce health warnings on the packaging of children’s foods that contain high amounts of sugar.

Personally, I think this is a good idea. The execution needs some thought of course, but it’s about time that our children were educated from day 1 about what they chose to put into their bodies.

What do you think?

 

 

Photo credit: robad0b via Foter.com / CC BY-SA

Photo credit: estherase via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

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