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Baby nutrition campaign launched

A campaign is being launched to educate parents about the best way to meet babies' nutritional needs in an attempt to combat the childhood obesity problem.

It follows a prediction by the Scottish public health minister, Gillian Merron, that of the 1,500 babies expected to be born on New Year's Day, 300 will be overweight or obese by the time they reach school age.

Ms Merron said action needs to be taken to ensure the problem is tackled, and the best place to start is with a healthy baby.

The Start4Life campaign focuses on six building blocks of life, including why breast milk is better for both mother and baby and information about how each day of breastfeeding makes a difference to babies' health.

Ms Merron said: "Unless we take action, one in five babies likely to be born this New Year's Day could be obese by the time they start school.

"What happens in the first years of a baby's life has a big effect on how healthy they are in the future.

"Despite recent encouraging statistics, which show that childhood obesity may be levelling off, obesity levels are still too high and it is important we keep the momentum going.

"That is why the government is today launching its Start4Life campaign, which will support pregnant women and parents of babies and give their families a good start for a healthier life."

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Start4Life campaign