Obesity is the new smoking: NHS England

NHS England’s chief executive Simon Steven has warned parents and teachers against high sugar consumption and emphasized the need to tackle overeating with the same passion as teen pregnancy, drink driving and smoking.

Stevens said public bodies and educators must now turn towards the number one priority for public health, stating: “We’ve done very well in terms of cutting smoking and teenage pregnancy and drink driving.”

“But the new smoking is obesity. One in five cancer deaths is now caused by obesity.”

Stevens said he wanted to reach out to “responsible retailers, food producers [who] can smell the coffee here.”

“One in three of our teenagers are drinking high-energy, sugary drinks,” he said. “I do think we’re going to need reformulation to take sugar out of foods, in the same way that successfully that’s happened with salt.”


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