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Obesity 'becoming seen as normal', warns medical chief

Being overweight is now seen as normal, according to the Chief Medical Officer Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Being overweight or obese is in danger of becoming seen as normal, the Chief Medical Officer for England has warned.

Dame Sally Davies said she was "increasingly concerned that society may be normalising being overweight".

The Chief Medical Officer said consumption of sugary drinks was contributing to obesity. Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Her annual report on the state of the nation's health said excessive consumption of sugar, particularly in soft drinks, was one of the factors behind rising obesity.

Dame Sally is calling on food and drink manufacturers to tweak their products so they have less added sugar.

She also said a 'sugar tax' may need to be considered if the industry's efforts to make products healthier are not successful.

E-cigs 'could be extremely damaging to young people'

We do not yet know the harm that e-cigarettes can cause to adults let alone to children, but we do know they are not risk free.

E-cigarettes can produce toxic chemicals and the amount of nicotine and other chemical constituents and contaminants, including vaporised flavourings, varies between products meaning they could be extremely damaging to young people’s health.

– Professor Dame Sally Davies, chief medical officer

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Medical chief tried hash cookies at university

Professor Dame Sally Davies, England's chief medical officer. Credit: PA Wire

England's chief medical officer, Professor Dame Sally Davies, has admitted eating hash cookies at university.

She said drug addiction should be seen as a medical problem, but that society chooses to treat it as a criminal justice issue.

Speaking on BBC Radio 3's Private Passions, Prof Davies said of her university days in the 1970s: "I never smoked so I couldn't smoke joints but I did have some cookies, until on the third or fourth occasion I had hallucinations and I've never touched it since.

"And I think I understood through that what my father said to me when I told him I was going to try it. He said: 'Drugs decivlise you. You stop being a civilised person.'

"And I understood why so many people were against even the soft drugs. So, like the fact I do enjoy wine, I'm open about my past."

She added: "Of course it's a medical problem, I mean addiction is a medical problem, and it becomes a public health problem and then our society is choosing to treat that as a criminal justice issue."

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