Health and Vitality

Sugar tax will help poor eat more healthily – study

Taxes on sugar-sweetened drinks and snack foods may benefit poorer households the most, according to new research. Using data from 13 countries, the experts show that changing the price of unhealthy products alters consumption across the board, yet the impact differs due to socioeconomic status. The greatest health benefits from tax rises are for people…
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Funding boost for healthy food of the future

A new €60m (£52m) venture capital fund will support “game-changing” companies working on everything from lab-grown meat to personalised nutrition. Five Seasons Ventures, the new venture capital firm behind the fund, said its focus is on “early-stage companies developing technological innovations aimed at solving the key challenges the sector currently faces”. Nestlé is among the…
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Can microalgae make hotdogs sustainable?

Ikea has revealed some of the new products being created in its test kitchen to “inspire people” to try more sustainable ingredients. This includes the “dogless hotdog”, made with baby carrots, beet and berry ketchup and roasted onions. The bun is made with spirulina – a microalgae containing 50 times more iron than spinach and…
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Public demands clearer nutritional information

Almost three quarters (73%) of the public want all cafés, restaurants and takeaways to use the same food labelling system on their products and menus. The survey, conducted for Diabetes UK, also found that 71% of diners feel they don’t have enough information about what’s in their food. Traffic light labelling has been shown to…
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McDonald’s food more unhealthy than 30 years ago

Food at McDonald’s is higher in calories, salt and sugar than it was 30 years ago, according to a report in the Sun newspaper. Fries, cheeseburgers and quarter-pounders all have more calories today compared to 1989, based on a leaflet distributed by the company at the time. The amount of sugar in a Big Mac…
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Chinese takeaways need health warning, say campaigners

An analysis of Chinese takeaway meals purchased from six independent restaurants in London’s famous Chinatown district has revealed that 97% contained a 2g of salt or more per dish. Over half (58%) contained more than 3g – or half an adult’s maximum recommended daily intake in one portion. Combining side dishes would consequently provide “far…
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Government announces 20% calorie reduction target

The food sector has been told to cut calories in their products by 20% by 2024 to help tackle the UK’s obesity crisis. “It’s hard for people to make healthy food choices, whether for themselves or their families,” said Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England yesterday. “That’s why we are challenging the food…
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School anti-obesity programmes don’t work

School based programmes aimed at preventing obesity in children are “are unlikely to halt the childhood obesity epidemic”, according to research published by the BMJ this week. The findings could have serious implications for the government’s childhood obesity plan and the tax on sugar-sweetened drinks – the proceeds for which will be channelled to schools…
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New study to help promote veganism

The Vegan Society has commissioned research to explore what prevents people moving to animal-free diets. The Vegan Society believes that more than half of British adults now “adopt began buying behaviour”, according to a report in the Guardian. Supermarkets also reported significant increases in sales of vegan products in January as tens of thousands of…
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Green light to set minimum pricing for alcohol

The tonic water has been on ice for some time, but the Scottish government has finally been given the go-ahead to introduce minimum unit pricing for alcohol. The UK Supreme Court this week ruled that the measure – passed overwhelmingly by the Scottish Parliament in 2012 – does not breach European law and can now…
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