Children are consuming 5,500 sugar cubes a year, around 22kg – the same weight as the average five-year-old.
These revelations come as Public Health England (PHE) launches its Smart Sugar app as part of its Change4life health programme, which works by scanning barcodes and revealing the total sugar cubes or grams in food and drinks.
As part of the campaign, Public Health England has released a short video highlighting the detrimental effect sugar can have on children’s oral health.
‘Children are having too much sugar, three times the maximum recommended amount,’ Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist for Public Health England, said.
‘This can lead to painful tooth decay, weight gain and obesity, which can also effect children’s wellbeing as they are more likely to be bullied, have low self-esteem and miss school.
‘Children aged five shouldn’t have more than 19 grams of sugar per day.
‘That’s five cubes, but it’s very easy to have more.
‘That’s why we want parents to be “Sugar Smart”.
‘Our easy to use app will help parents see exactly where the sugar in their children’s diet is coming from, so they can make informed choices about what to cut down on.’