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Help improve children’s health with a few simple swaps

Published: Monday, 10th January 2022 find healthier swaps with food scanner

A new campaign from the Department of Health and Social Care’s Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID) has launched, heroing the NHS Food Scanner App as part of its first ‘Better Health’ children’s nutrition campaign.

The App is the ideal hack for families, helping them to swap food and drink that are higher in sugar, saturated fat, and salt to healthier alternatives. The App comes on the back of a record rise in obesity amongst children over the last school year, with latest data highlighting that 1 in 4 children of reception school age are overweight or obese; this rises to 4 in 10 in Year 6 (ages 10-11).

With a simple scan of the barcodes, families can see how much sugar, saturated fat, and salt is in everyday food and drinks. The App suggests healthier swaps, by encouraging users to choose “Good Choice” products - there are thousands of Good Choice food and drink products you can swap to.

A full range of digital and printed resources will be available for partners on the Childhood Nutrition - Better Health Food | Campaign Resource Centre ( including posters, social media toolkit, digital screens and web banners and a communications campaign toolkit.

There is also a Children's Healthier Eating Toolkit which contains ten different activities to help you support families to make positive changes to their diet, with a particular focus on making healthier swaps. Activities are easy to run with children aged 4-11 and require minimal preparation and no expert knowledge. It is perfect for use in a range of settings with children and young families, such as children’s centres, libraries, leisure centres, breakfast and after school clubs and other similar locations. You can also download the Food Scanner App demo video, which is a quick, easy way to find out what the app is and how it works. It's also perfect for showing children and young families as a way of introducing them to the app too.

There will also be a comprehensive schools programme, with new curriculum-linked resources on the PHE School Zone to help pupils learn about healthy eating.

The campaign will run from the 10th January until the 31st March 2022

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