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Helping people to be healthier consumers

  • Last modified date:
    18 May 2007

A key principle of Choosing Health is that people should be supported to make healthier choices, rather than having decisions imposed upon them. The White Paper set out action that would make better health a real choice for consumers.

Brands for health

Choosing Health sets out an intention to market health by adding 5 A DAY and the NHS logo to sources of health information. The first government licensed logo, 5 A DAY is used to promote healthy eating by showing which products count towards your five daily portions of fruit and vegetables. Used by more than 400 organisations, the logo supported by clear criteria about how it can be used. 5 A DAY is promoted in consumer society, as well as in the NHS itself on hospital radio stations.

Interventions

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The Choosing Health consultation showed that people are in favour of the idea that the Government should act to make less healthy foods less appealing to children.Although children are not able to make fully informed decisions about their health, a great deal of food and drink advertising and promotion is targeted at them.

DH is working with the Food Standards Agency (FSA), Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Department for Education and Skills, Department for Trade and Industry, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Office of Communications (Ofcom) to restrict the advertising and promotion of foods high in fat, salt and sugar to children. The Food and Drink Advertising and Promotion Forum has also been set up to ensure the food and drinks industries and media are involved in the drive to promote healthier food choices.

People support intervention where a person's choices affects the health of others

People also support intervention in situations where one person's choices can affect the health of others. For this reason Choosing Health promised to make nearly all enclosed public places and workplaces smokefree. The measures will help to save lives by reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease and other diseases caused by exposure to cigarette smoke.

The Health Bill, introduced in October 2005, delivers the pledge to ban smoking in all enclosed public places apart from licensed premises that do not serve or prepare food and private members' clubs.

Additional links

Ambitions for Health

Ambitions for Health sets out our formal response to the recommendations contained in It's Our Health.

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