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Fast food not regarded as a "treat"

Fresh concerns are being raised about obesity levels as new research shows the majority of children in the UK do not think that fast food is a "treat".

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) study also reveals that youngsters no longer think that sweets and crisps should only be eaten occasionally.

The BHF poll found that 82% of seven to 14-year-olds do not consider crisps a treat, while more than 50% said the same about sweets.

And 67% of the children questioned said they do not believe fast food is solely for special occasions.

The BHF said that two-thirds of parents are worried that junk food and drink advertising is affecting their child's food choices.

The group is now launching a campaign calling on the Government to ban all marketing of junk food to children.

BHF director of prevention and care, Dr Mike Knapton, said: "Junk food marketing messages are skewing children's idea of what normal food is, and undermining their understanding of a treat."

The BHF's campaign will use the internet and special teaching packs to encourage 11 to 13-year-olds to think about the food they eat and be more aware of junk food marketing.

British Heart Foundation

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