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Campaign calls for healthier children's snacks

By Rachel Lawler
Children should eat no more than two snacks a day, of no more than 100 calories each, according to new advice from Public Health England (PHE). PHE has launched a campaign to promote the guidelines through the government’s Change4Life scheme.
According to PHE, children are eating an average of three unhealthy snacks and sugary drinks each day, with one third eating four or more of these unhealthy snacks. Fruit and vegetables are not included in the limited snacks, as children should be encouraged to eat a variety of these each day.
Healthier choices
The new campaign is promoting healthier choices for children’s snacks and advising parents not to offer children more than two each day, in a bid to help reduce sugar consumption, obesity and dental problems.
PHE has also highlighted the calorie content of some unhealthy snacks. For example, an ice cream typically contains around 175 calories, a packet of crisps contains around 190 calories and a pastry contains around 270 calories.
100 calories, two snacks a day
Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England, said: “The true extent of children’s snacking habits is greater than the odd biscuit or chocolate bar. Children are having unhealthy snacks throughout the day and parents have told us they’re concerned. To make it easier for busy families, we’ve developed a simple rule of thumb to help them move towards healthier snacking – look for 100 calories snacks, two a day max.”
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