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Scottish Cancer Prevention Network | Putting Prevention First

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Diet

#EatingOutWithKids – A Father’s perspective

I ordered a kids sandwich for my two year old in a well known Northumbrian cafe last month and this is what arrived.

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#EatingOutWithKids – A mothers perspective

Eating out was once a special treat – but in today’s busy society we find ourselves consuming food away from home more often. With evidence showing that eating at food outlets, leisure places and “on the go” are associated with less healthy food choices than eating at home – how as parents do we tackle the diverse landscape of children’s food? [1]

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Snacking – for and against

By Dr Anna Gryka-MacPhail, Policy Officer, Obesity Action Scotland

Snacks vs. healthy snacks

Some people when asked what a snack is would point to crisps, biscuits, pastries or chocolate bars. Such products are heavy on calories but poor in important nutrients and were named ‘discretionary’ by Food Standards Scotland. We consume up to a fifth of energy from these products. This, together with the fact that on average we eat excess of 200-300 kcal every day, suggests a simple action: #sackthesnack. A 2015 survey found that more than half of the people would prefer to cut down on snacks.

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Should we call a spade a shovel? Polite names for Junk Foods and other extra calorie sources

Last week we launched our social media campaign called #sackthesnack inviting readers to take the challenge of swopping one daily snack for alternative behaviours like taking 200 steps, doing a little #kettlecise stretching or maybe even standing and moving to take a short phone call. The rationale for focussing on snacks was because snacks like biscuits, cakes, pastries, crisps and sugary drinks provide a fifth of our calories and cutting even one of these snacks in our daily life (and burning a few calories extra) might help us on the way to re-balancing our energy intake.

Continue reading “Should we call a spade a shovel? Polite names for Junk Foods and other extra calorie sources”

Take the challenge – #sackthesnack

Once upon a time a snack was a treat, an extra or a present. As a child I eagerly awaited the arrival of the 6.40pm bus on a Thursday which delivered Auntie Mary with her bag containing the Bunty comic and a small tube of smarties (“for my wee snack”). The conditions of use were that sweeties had be shared with my big sister and all adults offered one (they could choose their colour). As a rural living 8 year old this visit was the highlight of my week. 

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Building momentum: lessons on implementing a robust sugar sweetened beverage tax

Sugar sweetened beverage (SSB) taxes get a lot of media coverage. This is in part because they are building momentum globally – to date, 45 jurisdictions around the world have implemented an SSB tax and 42% of these have been put in place since 1 January 2017 – and also because they face strong opposition. Governments seeking to implement an SSB tax need to be ready to defend the design of their tax against this opposition. Continue reading “Building momentum: lessons on implementing a robust sugar sweetened beverage tax”

Medical student: What the 12 codes against cancer taught me about cancer prevention

During first year of medical school, I walked in to my nutrition tutorial eating chocolate buttons and I was told off by the person undertaking the session. I proceeded to place the chocolate in my bag, listen to how we need to eat our “five a day” and minimise sugar intake and then left the class to finish off my chocolate. During the first three years of medical school, we are taught about a long list of conditions that result from an unhealthy lifestyle. This comes in contrast with the very little teaching we get on lifestyle modification. So, if my teaching on this topic is limited, how am I expected to embrace this lifestyle myself and subsequently deliver it effectively to my patients? Continue reading “Medical student: What the 12 codes against cancer taught me about cancer prevention”

Healthy Halloween

Because without doubt, one of the scariest things about Halloween is the amount of sugar consumed…

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In 2016, 65% of people in Scotland were overweight or obese and strong evidence shows that the consumption of processed foods high in sugar is a cause of weight gain, overweight and obesity. The main sources are confectionary (chocolate and sweets) and sugary drinks. On average, adults in Scotland consume 14.1% of their daily intake from sugar, when the recommended upper intake is only 5%. This is a contributory factor in more people being overweight- toddlers, children and adults!

Being overweight or obese increases the risk of 13 different types of cancers, so to reduce this risk we need to aim for healthy choices, like lowering the amount of added sugar in our diets. 

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Do We Forget About Men?

Monday marked the start of #MensHealthWeek 2018, so are WE as a nation doing enough to help men look after their health?!  We know when it comes to health, men are less likely to talk to each other about their concerns and are less likely to visit their GP so here are some, perhaps surprising, facts about men… Continue reading “Do We Forget About Men?”

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