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United Kingdom picks fight with obesity

The goals of the new “Better Health” campaign is to save lives and protect the NHS throughout and after the coronavirus pandemic

  • July 30, 2020 14:30
  • Author Anton Stoyanov
Medium boris johnson covid
Source: Boris Johnson Covid-19 Press Conference by Number 10 on Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

In an effort to save lives and protect the NHS, the UK government has unveiled its new anti-obesity strategy which aims to get the entire nation fit, healthy and more able to withstand diseases such as COVID-19.

Personal experience and national change

Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s own bout with COVID-19 taught him a valuable lesson – that the disease is especially complicated for those suffering from obesity. Throughout his recovery, he repeatedly made overtures to the idea that the government should do more to eliminate the problem in the UK and has now finally presented a concrete plan of action.

The government’s new “Better Health” campaign will introduce changes to all facets of life – ranging from the marketing of products, to promotional campaigns and to the very nature of the food that is on offer in the United Kingdom.

Some of the proposals put forward by the government include:

  • A ban on commercials for fatty and sugary foods before 9 PM
  • Putting an end to “buy one get one for free” types of deals for unhealthy foods
  • Requiring for calory count to be featured and listed on menus in order to allow people to make better, healthier and more informed choices
  • Kickstarting a campaign for citizens to get into shape following COVID-19

The new strategy will also bolster support for the National Health Service and is meant to make the entirety of the UK more resistant to future waves of COVID-19. What makes the new strategy different compared to previous attempts at tackling obesity is the fact that it will target every single member of society – while previous ones had been mainly concerned with childhood obesity.

Upon unveiling the new strategy Prime Minister Boris Johnson stated that “Losing weight is hard but with some small changes we can all feel fitter and healthier. If we all do our bit, we can reduce our health risks and protect ourselves against coronavirus – as well as taking pressure off the NHS.”

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