A new initiative – SUGAR SMART Isle of Wight – will raise awareness of hidden sugars and the impact they have on the health of Islanders.
Organisations, businesses and individuals across the Island are being asked to join SUGAR SMART Isle of Wight by taking action, to help make it easier for people to reduce their sugar consumption.
Research concludes people are consuming too much sugar, especially children.
Diets high in sugar can contribute to excess calorie consumption, potentially leading to weight gain and obesity.
This can lead to a range of social and health problems, including type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, as well as related psychological and social problems such as stress, depression and bullying.
High levels of sugar also increase the risk of tooth decay, another significant cost to families and the NHS.
SUGAR SMART Isle of Wight was informed by a local survey of Islanders at the end of 2016, which identified that local residents want action on hidden sugars.
The Isle of Wight Council is working in partnership with the IOW NHS Trust, leisure services, IW Chamber of Commerce, IOW Clinical Commissioning Group and other organisations to help people to identify how much sugar is in the food they eat.
Councillor Clare Mosdell, Cabinet member for adult social care and Public Health, said: “We know that there are many causes for obesity including genetics, behaviour, the environment and our culture.
“SUGAR SMART Isle of Wight is a great opportunity for us to work together to help our local community, to raise awareness of hidden sugars.
“I would encourage all Islanders, employers, food businesses local retailers and schools to make a pledge to the initiative and help raise awareness of hidden sugars in food.”
Dr Ben Browne, GP at East Cowes Medical Centre, said “I am delighted to be part of the team co-ordinating the SUGAR SMART initiative on the Isle of Wight. Making changes to what we eat is never easy but every small action from local partners can make a real difference in helping us all achieve diets that will do us less harm and make us more aware of hidden sugar in everyday food.”
Why SUGAR SMART?
The recommended maximum intake of added sugar per day is
· Age 4- 6 recommended limit is 19g or 5 cubes
· Age 7-10 recommended limit is 24g or 6 cubes
· 11 years + recommended limit is 30g or 7 cubes
(1 cube = approx. 4g)
However on average adults are consuming twice this amount and children eating 2-3 times as much.
SUGAR SMART is about increasing choice and fairness through food availability and reducing promotion of unhealthy foods – it’s about being SUGAR SMART, not sugar free!