CHILDREN in Wokingham are eating nearly three times the daily recommended amount of sugar it has been revealed, as the council steps up its support of a campaign to promote healthy diets.

Wokingham Borough Council is backing the latest Change4Life campaign which aims to help parents take control of their children’s snacking.

Recent data shows childhood obesity has reached alarming rates, with 21.4 per cent of four-to-five year-olds overweight or obese in the South East, increasing to 30.6 per cent in 10-11 year-olds.

Darrell Gale, interim director of public health for Berkshire, said: “Obesity levels in Wokingham Borough are lower than in the South East with 18 per cent of four-to-five year-olds and 27.1 per cent of 10 to 11-year-olds overweight or obese.

“However, obese children are more likely to have long-term health and other issues, such as being absent from school due to illness, experience health-related limitations and require more medical care than children of a normal weight. We know that parents are concerned about their children’s snacking habits and Change4Life offers parents practical advice to help them make healthier choices”.

The council say that adjusting a child’s diet by reducing calories, will have an extremely positive effect on their growth and general lifestyle.

Councillor Julian McGhee-Sumner, executive member for adults’ services, health, wellbeing and housing said: “The Change4Life message is simple – ‘Look for 100 calorie snacks, two a day max’ making it easier for busy families to make an informed choice which applies to all snacks apart from fruit and vegetables.”

You can also sign up to the Change4Life website to receive money-off vouchers for healthier snacks and helpful tips and ideas. Find out what’s inside popular snacks by downloading the free, updated ‘food scanner’ app from the iTunes store or Google Play.