A hospital in Manchester has become the first in Britain to ban sugar from its restaurant in an attempt to tackle growing concerns about obesity among NHS staff.
Tameside hospital has removed all added sugar from the meals it prepares for visitors and health service workers, and taken sugary snacks and fizzy drinks off its menu. The only drinks visitors can buy are tea, coffee, milk and water.
The move has been welcomed by campaigners, who are urging other hospitals to follow suit.
“This is long overdue and I believe it just takes one hospital to make this move and all the others should follow, and I hope they will. The Department of Health … seems to be really slow on the uptake and are only just now thinking about banning sugary drinks from hospitals. But it’s sugar in food that is so important. I just think [Tameside’s plan] is excellent and I wish them well,” said Tam Fry, chair of the National Obesity Forum.
The hospital restaurant’s chef, Simon Smith, is one of the few dietetically-trained chefs in the NHS. He also provides low-carbohydrate healthy main courses. “He is preparing a lot of stuff – and it’s a large hospital, not a small one,” said Fry.