Childhood obesity won’t be solved when the food industry discourages healthy eating from the earliest of ages
My break from work came to an end this morning, as I was reminded of a fact: children are eating too much sugar. The new and welcoming part of the story was that the government is launching a campaign in England to help parents choose lower-sugar options for their children.
Wearing my nutritionist’s hat, blaming sugar alone is not the answer to childhood obesity. Still, every action in the fight against obesity does help. Keeping the sugar debate alive opens opportunities for much-needed action in areas that have received little attention. The levy on sugar in Mexico and recently in the UK revealed the results that are possible when there is engagement from governments and the food industry. In the UK, we are just at the beginning of a wider programme that will succeed only if important players such as the infant food industry become actively engaged.
My interest in this began in 2009 when I became a mother and had the responsibility of choosing what to feed my twins. Being a nutritionist gave me a lot of advantages in navigating the baby feeding journey but also made me wonder what choices other parents have. What does the market offer when parents decide not to, or cannot, prepare baby food from scratch? I was so concerned that I decided to refocus my academic research on infant feeding...