School Meals Should Be Sugar-Free Says FDS

School Meals Should Be Sugar-Free Says FDS

Calls for school meals to be made sugar-free have been backed by The Faculty of Dental Surgery (FDS) at the Royal College of Surgeons of England.

The Press Association reported that the FDS has said it would support the publication of nutritional guidelines for packed lunches and supervised tooth brushing sessions in schools.

The Faculty has also said it will put its weight behind calls for supervised tooth brushing sessions in schools.

The FDS said that prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, dental decay was the top reason for children aged between five and nine to be admitted to hospital in England.

Recent reports suggest that a significant proportion of child have not seen a dentist since the start of the coronavirus pandemic and NHS dental attendance figures published in February show that 70% of children in England did not see an NHS dentist in the 12 months to 31 December 2020, the FDS said.

There is also some concern that children may also be given sugary school lunch desserts or packed lunches also containing high levels of sugar.

Mr Matthew Garrett, dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons of England, told the  Press Association the “FDS believes that limiting the availability of surgery foods and drinks in schools is essential to reducing the frequency with which our children consume sugar.”

“In a year that has seen visits to the dentist disrupted by the pandemic, it’s even more important that we take steps to protect children’s teeth at home, and at school.

PA reported British Dental Association chair Dr Eddie Crouch as saying  “Food and drink loaded with free sugars have absolutely no place in our schools.”

“The Government needs to show the courage of its convictions on prevention.”

“These are products have little to no nutritional value.”

He added “No one would lose out from a sugar-free schools policy save irresponsible elements of the food industry.”

PA said “The latest figures from the National Childhood Measurement Programme show that over one in five (23%) children in reception are overweight or obese. This rises to 35% among children who are starting secondary school.”

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