oa South African Journal of Clinical Nutrition - Do tuck shops contribute to an unhealthy, obesogenic lifestyle among schoolchildren? : editorial

Volume 24, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1607-0658
  • E-ISSN: 2221-1268



The World Health Organization's (WHO) projections indicate that noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) will be responsible for a significantly increased total number of deaths in the next decade. Africa is one of the regions where the greatest increase is expected. Interventions to prevent NCDs on a population-wide basis are not only achievable, but also cost effective. The WHO proposes "best buy" actions that should be undertaken immediately to accelerated progress in terms of lives saved, diseases prevented and healthcare costs saved. Nutrition-related actions include reducing salt intake and replacing trans fat in food with polyunsaturated fat. There is also consistent evidence that the promotion of healthy eating in schools can reduce the risk for NCDs, hence the WHO policy on school-based interventions. Another cost-effective and population-wide intervention proposed by the WHO is restrictions on marketing of foods and beverages high in salt, fats and sugar, especially to children.

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