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​Sugar smart app helps you check for sugar content in food at home or shopping

​​​Get 'sugar smart' with free app

A new campaign which aims to provide families with the knowledge and tools they need to help them cut down on sugar found in children's everyday foods and drinks has been launched to encourage parents to get "Sugar Smart" and take control of their children's sugar intake.

Research shows that children are consuming three times more sugar than the maximum recommended daily amount.

The campaign includes a new Sugar Smart app which parents and carers in Merton can use to find out how much total sugar is in every day food and drink. 

Too much sugar can lead to the build-up of harmful fat around vital organs. This can cause serious disease such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers in the future.

The new Sugar Smart app is quick and easy to use as you simply scan the barcode of the food or drink product and it will tell you how many sugar cubes it contains.

The biggest source of sugar for children – around 30 per cent - is sugary drinks. Around 29 per cent comes from biscuits, cakes and breakfast cereals, 22 per cent from sweets, chocolate, table sugar, jams and other sweet spreads and 12 per cent from yoghurts, fromage frais, ice-cream, and other dairy desserts.  

New official guidelines announced in July 2015, recommend that the maximum added sugar intake for four to six-year-olds is no more than 19g per day – the equivalent of five sugar cubes. The recommended amount for seven to 10-year-olds is no more than 24g per day – or six sugar cubes.

Children between four and 10 on average consume 5,543 sugar cubes through their food and drink each year – that's more than the total body weight of an average five-year-old child.

On average, there are nine sugar cubes in a can of cola, over five sugar cubes in sugary yoghurt and five sugar cubes in a muffin. 

Download the free Sugar Smart app on iTunes or Google Play.

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