Every NHS hospital in England has agreed to cut sales of sugary drinks to help battle high obesity rates.
A total of 23 trusts have agreed to stop selling beverages high in sugar and the remaining 204 have pledged to reduce sales to 10% or less.
Since last year, when the NHS England challenged hospitals to try and ditch sugary drinks in their canteens, vending machines and shops, sales have already dropped to just 7.4%. This equates to nearly 30 million teaspoons of sugar having been removed from NHS cafes, shops and vending machines.
Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England said: “Every hospital in the country is now answering this important call to action and the NHS is rightly leading the way in battling the growing obesity epidemic across the country.
“Obesity and its associated dangers is a worrying challenge facing the NHS and so it is crucial, as we draw up a long term plan for the future of the NHS that we take action where we can to avoid a long list of preventable problems in the years ahead.”
It is hoped sugar intake will significantly reduce among patients, staff and visitors if sugary drinks are no longer available on site.
The sugar health drive has also been extended to major retailers with WHSmith, Boots, Marks &Spencer and Greggs, also signing up to reduce sales.
Professor Jonathan Valabhji, National Clinical Director for Diabetes and Obesity, at NHS England said: “We have been clear that the growing obesity rates sweeping the country are a public health crisis. Obesity is associated with type 2 diabetes, heart attacks, many of the common forms of cancer, and a string of other illnesses.
“Our own sugar restrictions are delivering good results and as part of the long term plan we are exploring all potential options including very low calorie diets to tackle obesity and type 2 diabetes.”
Editor’s note: Reducing sugar intake is pivotal to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes risk. Our Low Carb Program has helped people with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes lose an average of 7kg after one year by cutting out sugar and instead eating delicious, real foods.

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