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Change 4 Life: Be Food Smart Campaign

Change4Life’s Be Food Smart campaign is now live. The campaign highlights the high levels of sugar, salt and saturated fat found in children’s everyday foods and drinks and encourages parents to be food smart and explore what’s hidden in different foods and drinks
 
Background

We know that families don’t know how much sugar, saturated fat and salt is in their foods, which means that millions of kids are eating way too much of it. On average, children in England are consuming three times more sugar than the maximum recommended daily amount.i1 They might seem fine on the outside but too much sugar can lead to the build-up of harmful fat on the inside that we can’t see. This fat around their vital organs can cause serious diseases in the future such as heart disease, some cancers and Type 2 diabetes.ii 
 
Childhood obesity is a growing issue with figures showing that in England, more than 1 in 4 children aged 4-to 5-years-old and more than 1 in 3 children aged 10 and 11-years-old are overweight or obese.
 
National Campaign
 
In addition to TV ads, billboard and digital advertising, the campaign includes distribution of five million free Be Food Smart  packs to primary age children and their families via schools, local authorities and retailers. The packs include:
  • hints and tips for how families can Be Food Smart and reduce the amount of sugar, salt and saturated fat eaten
  • pointers to all the Be Food Smart tips on the Change4Life website
  • information on the free Change4Life Be Food Smart Sugar Smart app
The Change4Life ‘Be Food Smart’ campaign brings food labels to life, enabling families to make healthier food and drink choices. The free app works by scanning the barcode of products, revealing the total sugar, saturated fat and salt inside and encourages users to make healthier choices.
 
The new Be Food Smart app is available now from the app store or Google play by searching for ‘Be Food Smart’ or ‘Change for Life’:
 
Local Campaign
 
Locally, we will be supporting the campaign in a number of ways with the primary message of directing people to the app and the Change4Life website including: -
  • Promoting the campaign in a variety of settings through publicity, displays and newsletters
  • Embedding the campaigns messages into local community food projects i.e. cooking groups by  raising awareness of sugar, food and saturated fat content in food and drinks
  • Distribution of consumer packs and posters via the Public Health Resource Centre
  • Publicising the Leeds Food Detective (#LeedsFoodDetective)
Updates will be sent to stakeholders on local events and activities.
 
How you can support the sugar smart campaign
  • Share the message on social media. Follow @change4life or use the hashtag #BeFoodSmart 
  • Actively promote the Leeds Food Detective by downloading and sharing what he's doing via social media using #LeedsFoodDetective
  • Encourage people to visit the Change4Life website.
  • Download the new Be Food Smart app from the app store or Google play by searching for ‘Be Food Smart’ or ‘Change for Life’:
  • Promote through your newsletter, website or any other channels you have.
  • Look out for our local newsletters to find out what’s happening across Leeds
For more information please contact:
 
Emma Simmonds
Communications and Marketing
Leeds City Council
Tel: 07712 106 376
emma.simmonds@leeds.gov.uk 
 
Emma Strachan
Public Health
Mobile: 07712 214858
emma.strachan@leeds.gov.uk
 
Deb Lowe
Public Health
Deborah.Lowe@leeds.gov.uk
 

1  The recommended daily maximum added sugar intake is:
19g, that’s five sugar cubes for four to six-year-olds
24g, that’s six sugar cubes for seven to ten-year-olds
30g, that’s seven sugar cubes for 11-year-olds and older
i  Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition 2015 Report. Available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/sacn-carbohydrates-and-health-report [Accessed December 2015]
ii  Singh AS, Mulder C, Twisk JW, van Mechelen W, Chinapaw MJ. (2008) Tracking of childhood
overweight into adulthood: a systematic review of the literature. Obesity Review; 9(5): 474-88 
 

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