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At a glance: Boris Johnson’s obesity strategy

Boris Johnson is preparing to announce his plan to slim down the country as part of his obesity strategy on Monday.

The measures are designed to address Britain’s bulging waistline, with nearly two-thirds of British adults above a healthy weight, according to government data.

The Department of Health said that 36% of the country was considered overweight and 28% was considered obese, while one in three children ages 10 to 11 is overweight or obese.

Here are the main details of the strategy.

– Stores

Stores are banned from promoting “buy one, get one free” for unhealthy products, as the government wants to reduce the temptation to snack.

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Promoting confectionery and other high-sugar foods at the checkout of supermarkets or store entrances will be prohibited under proposals in the Obesity Strategy (Mike Egerton / PA)

Supermarket managers should also not place sweets in enticing locations, such as store entrances and next to cash registers, and will instead be encouraged to offer more discounts on fruits and vegetables.

– Advertisement

The Prime Minister’s strategy will end advertising of junk food on television and online before the 9pm turnaround in an effort to protect young people at a time when their food preferences are being determined.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he thought his weight played a role in requiring intensive care treatment for his Covid-19 symptoms (Evening Standard / Jeremy Selwyn)

The government will also hold a consultation on whether the planned restrictions on internet advertising could be wider, considering a general ban on advertising foods with a high fat, sugar or salt content.

– Counting calories

Ministers will introduce new legislation requiring restaurants and takeaways with more than 250 employees to add calorie labels to their menus to help diners make more informed choices.

The Department of Health said a consultation would follow before the end of the year to help decide whether the same type of calorie labeling on alcohol should be required.

– Interventions in health care

To help people shed pounds, NHS weight management services will be expanded, with more smartphone apps rolling out with the aim of improving lifestyle and overall health.

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GPs are encouraged to prescribe bike rides to help patients lose weight (Jane Barlow / PA)

The NHS Diabetes Prevention Program will also see improvements.

GPs are encouraged to prescribe exercise and other social activities to help people stay fit, with bicycle pilots in the poorest areas offering bicycles to entice people to increase their activity levels.

– Labeling of food packages

A consultation – the third part of the strategy – will gather evidence on how the current “traffic light” labeling system on food parcels is used by consumers and industry, compared to other international examples.

The labeling is used to highlight the fat content and other barometers of how healthy a product is, to help customers understand what’s in the food they buy.

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