FSS campaign encourages Scots to be snack smart
A healthy eating campaign aimed at encouraging people in Scotland to reduce the number of unhealthy snacks they eat has been launched by Food Standards Scotland (FSS).
The campaign addresses the country’s diet related poor health and obesity record by highlighting the damage Scots are potentially doing to their future health by over indulging and ‘treating’ themselves and their children too often with unhealthy and unnecessary snacks.
Around one third of children and around two thirds of adults in Scotland are currently overweight or obese. It is forecast that, unless things change, 40% of adults in Scotland could be obese by 2030.
An FSS survey shows that the average child in Scotland aged between four and 10 years old consumes an average of around 24.5kg of unhealthy, unnecessary snacks each year – which equates to over 110,000 calories. In addition, the average intake of sugary drinks is around 145 cans or 48 litres per year, which is equivalent to 4.6kg of sugar or 19,400 calories. Over the year, an average seven year old child eats more than their body weight (23kg) in unhealthy snacks alone, and consumption of unhealthy snacks and drinks equates to around a quarter (129,749 kcal) of their yearly calorie requirement.
FSS’s recent report highlights that people in Scotland get half of their total sugar intake and one fifth of all calories from snacks and treats, such as cakes, biscuits, chocolate, sugary drinks and sweets.
Ross Finnie, FSS chair says, “Scotland’s poor health and obesity record cannot continue on its current path. Many people in Scotland think they have a healthy diet, however a significant number of people either forget or are simply in denial about the amount of calories they consume via unhealthy snacks.
“Too many treats and habitual unhealthy snacking soon add up and can have a long term detrimental impact on an individual’s health. This campaign will encourage consumers in Scotland to make small changes every day to protect theirs, and their children’s, health in years to come.”
The campaign encourages people to drop unhealthy snacks or swap them for healthier alternatives and share their top tips for avoiding bad snacking habits on the FSS Facebook page.