- New ‘pounds to lose’ system will strip out points based on being healthy
- Will be launched in 2022 and is based on plans being run in Singapore and Canada
- But one expert characterized it as a ‘waste of cash’ and a ‘nanny-state’ style policy.
People in the UK will receive cinema tickets and shopping vouchers as rewards for losing weight under a new government plan to combat obesity.
The plan, called FitMiles, will see Brits wearing Fitbit-style devices to monitor their exercise levels.
This will encourage them to eat healthier, reduce their portion sizes and increase the number of daily steps they take.
In exchange for improving their lifestyle, they will collect points that can be redeemed for vouchers or discounts on items.
Shedding the pound could soon win the British pound under a new government scheme to reward exercise and healthy eating with incentives like vouchers and cinema tickets
The new plan is the latest anti-obesity measure violated by Downing Street. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, pictured on a run here earlier this week, converted his stay in the ICU to a ‘nanny-state’ health intervention after having Covid for his weight.
What can be included in an online advertising ban?
The proposed ban on online ads for junk food will target food and beverage products that are high in fat, sugar and salt.
How a product is classified as HFSS is not yet finalized.
Experts suggest that a ‘traffic light’ system can be used on food packaging. The government has also developed a nutrient profile model.
Foods that may be considered HFSS under these methods may include:
- Desi cheese
- oil and dressing
- butter and spreads
- breakfast cereal
- crunchy and salty snacks
Some of the items the government plans to offer include discounts on cinema or theme park tickets, shopping vouchers, vouchers for clothing and food, and gym passes.
But a prominent commentator described the policy as a ‘waste of money’ and an example of the continuous infiltration of the Nani-State into the lives of the people.
A pilot version of the plan will be launched in January in an announced borough of England for six months before being implemented in the rest of the country.
Vaccines and Public Health Minister Maggie Troupe unveiled the plan to lawmakers in the House of Commons today, saying all adults in the area selected for the pilot would be specifically targeted at those living in disadvantaged areas.
For other No. 10 anti-obesity measures, such as the snack tax, Ms Throp said the government wants to reward ‘good’ work.
“Obesity policies can’t just be about sticks, we should reward healthy behavior too,” he said.
‘If we get this right it will be good for our NHS, good for our economy and good for our society.’
The government is spending £3 million on the scheme and has awarded the contract to health technology company Headup.
It is the latest in a string of anti-obesity initiatives from No 10 in recent months, as the government seeks to reduce its impact on the country’s waistline and budget.
About two-thirds of adults in England are classified as overweight or obese, with obesity-related disease costing the NHS £6 billion a year.
Obesity has also been linked with a higher chance of becoming seriously ill from COVID. Government data indicated that about 8 per cent of the critically ill Covid patients were morbidly obese, compared to 3 per cent of the general population.
The Health Secretary, Sajid Javid, claimed that the government was committed to improving the health of the people and hence the demand they placed on the NHS.
‘I want to make sure we are doing as much as we can to tackle health disparities across the country, and this new pilot will pave the way for developing new ways to improve the lives of individuals, and the NHS But it will also help in reducing stress. ,’ he said.
‘This pilot is an excellent opportunity to explore how to inspire people to make small changes in their daily lives that will have a lasting positive impact on their health.’
But Christopher Snowdon, head of lifestyle economics at the think-tank Institute of Economic Affairs, told talkradio The scheme this morning is yet another example of the ‘slippery slope’ of interfering in people’s lives.
‘It’s £3 million which is about 4p per person, so at least it’s not as expensive as other Nani state projects,’ he said.
‘It’s not immoral, it’s just a waste of £3 million.’
Labor’s shadow public health minister Alex Norris also said the plan argued for failing to tackle the effects of poverty on obesity.
“Poverty limits your food choices, your exercise choices, your time,” he said.
‘Whatever this pilot achieves, whatever obesity strategy they achieve, they all knock a cock hat into Universal Credit by cutting £20 a week.
‘It will push millions of people to cheaper less healthy alternatives.’
But the health group Obesity Health Coalition, a group that includes the Royal College and health charities, welcomed the announcement.
But Alliance lead Carolyn Cerny said the government should fully implement restrictions on the food industry to improve people’s health.
“It’s good to see the government take further action to support people to be more physically active and eat more fruits and vegetables,” she said.
‘Along with bringing in these incentives to support individual behavior change, the government should encourage the food industry to produce healthier products by introducing levies to promote reform.’
In announcing the plan, the government pointed to evidence from similar plans from Singapore and Canada showing that financial incentives have improved rates of physical activity in populations.
The government has said that the new app will also have user privacy and security ‘at its core’.
Tackling obesity in Brits has been one of the government’s favorite projects…