Call to pro­tect chil­dren from junk food advertising and cut obe­sity

Coventry Telegraph - - NEWS -

NHS spend­ing on obe­sity is soar­ing as junk food com­pa­nies pour mil­lions of pounds into advertising un­healthy prod­ucts in the UK, a group of lead­ing char­i­ties has warned.

The 18 top-spend­ing crisp, con­fec­tionery and sug­ary drinks brands are pay­ing out more than £143 mil­lion a year on advertising, ac­cord­ing to anal­y­sis by the Obe­sity Health Al­liance (OHA), re­leased to mark World Obe­sity Day.

The NHS mean­while spends an es­ti­mated £38 mil­lion a year on weight loss surgery as part of £5.1 bil­lion on obe­sity-re­lated con­di­tions.

The mil­lions spent on junk food advertising also “dwarfs” the £5.2 mil­lion spent by the Gov­ern­ment last year on its flag­ship healthy eat­ing pro­gramme, lead­ing to an “un­bal­anced en­vi­ron­ment push­ing con­sumers to­wards un­healthy choices”, the al­liance of 40 lead­ing health char­i­ties said.

Junk food brands are spend­ing 27.5 times more on advertising their prod­ucts than the amount avail­able for the Gov­ern­ment’s Change4Life healthy eat­ing cam­paign, while NHS spend­ing on weight loss surgery alone is an es­ti­mated six times the amount spent on the Change4Life cam­paign, ac­cord­ing to the anal­y­sis.

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