Meal deals could be banned alongside price hike on sweet treats amid Ireland’s obesity issues
Those with a sweet tooth in Ireland could be in for another price hike in the coming months as health officials work to create solutions to Ireland’s obesity issues.
According to a new report from the HSE, meal deals could be made ‘illegal’ nationwide in a bid to discourage overeating.
This is among a number of changes being considered after the World Health Organisation placed Ireland in the top ten countries for obesity.
New figures released show 65% of Irish people are now considered to be overweight, and so, some are calling for a minimum pricing unit on calorific and sugary foods to help curb the issue.
On the Claire Byrne show earlier this week, nutritionists and dieticians joined the host in the studio to show the huge amounts of sweets that can be bought with as little as €5 and some watching labelled it as ‘alarming’ on Twitter.
The guests purchased sweets from Lidl, Aldi, Tesco, Euro Giant, and Dealz for under a small budget, and most ended up equalling over 2,000 calories.
Now, the HSE's clinical lead on obesity has called for meal deals to be made illegal in order to encourage people to make better food choices.
Dr. Donal O'Shea said Ireland is at a "tipping point" in the battle against obesity, and that many Irish people are not classed in the healthy weight bracket for their height.
Therefore there maybe moves to ban meal deals, found in supermarkets and petrol stations.
Most offer a food and drink bundle at a reduced price, which usually includes a sandwich, soft drink and a bar of chocolate or packet of crisps.
Speaking to Newstalk, Dr. O'Shea said these deals almost always include solely unhealthy food options and therefore should be banned.
"Literally, that should be illegal.
"The industry has the statistics and they know how to prompt and promote consumption," he explained.
“We just have to be super aware of that and try to resist it.
"Those buy one get one free offers are always around the high fat, high salt, high sugar stuff, never around fruit.”
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