Fast food addicts in the United Kingdom are about to get a rude awakening. The government has announced a strict new diet for the nation, following suggestions the public have become too fat.
Public Health England (PHE) has launched their ‘OneYou’ campaign in hopes they can stop the growing problem before it gets out of hand. Citizens are being told they must try to restrict their daily food intake to a meagre 400 calories for breakfast and 600 calories at lunch and dinner time.
At present, the British government recommends that women should be consuming about 2,000 calories a day, while men are slightly higher at 2,500. The new guidelines won’t change these recommendations as such, but they will encourage people to eat less at breakfast, lunch and dinner.
“Calorie guidelines have not changed,” The Independent reports a spokesperson from PHE saying. “It’s still 2,000 a day for women and 2,500 for men. Adults consume 200-300 too many calories a day, leading to weight gain and health issues.”
Some 62 per cent of adults in the UK are considered obese, while 63.4 per cent of Aussie adults fall into the same category. In the USA, 75 per cent of the population is expected to be overweight by 2020.
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Because Brits are continually consuming more than the recommended amount, the government and PHE say they have had no choice but to roll out the extreme new rules. The new health program, set to be implemented over the coming months, will also target items sold at take away restaurants and meals available at convenience stores.
Food suppliers will be forced to reduce the level of calories in pre-packaged meals and snacks. There are no guidelines yet on what will happen to made-to-order foods such as hot chips or burgers.
The Australian reports the campaign has already received some backlash, with some Brits calling the change a “nanny state state in overdrive”. However, PHE is sticking by the recommendation.
“Our new OneYou campaign will give tips on managing calories for main meals so that by the end of the day, including snacks and drinks, total calories are closer to the guidelines,” the PHE spokesperson said.
The NHS hopes that offering healthier alternatives will help people make better decisions. “What you eat, and how much, is so important for your health and your waistline,” they said on their website. “Choosing healthier foods is easier than you might think. There are lots of cheap and tasty ways you and your family can eat well every day.”
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In addition to cutting back calories, they’re encouraging people to avoid eating too much sugar, watching out for saturated fats and being aware of salt contents in the foods they consume.
In Australia, the Australian Medical Association’s call for a sugar tax on unhealthy beverages was recently declined by the government while in America, there are calls for take away cup sizes to be reduced to help combat the obesity epidemic.
What do you think? Should the government get to decide what people eat, or should people be able to make their own decisions?
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