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01:15 - Source: CNN

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Targeted foods include pizzas, ready-made sandwiches and savory snacks

The plan could prevent 35,000 premature deaths and save the NHS £9 billion ($12.5 billion) over 25 years

CNN  — 

The UK has become the first country to challenge the food industry to cut calories in everyday foods by a fifth in an attempt to halt the rising levels of obesity in adults and children.

A report published Tuesday by Public Health England, an agency of the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care, shows that overweight or obese boys in England consume 500 excess calories every day. Girls in the same weight category overconsume by 290 calories per day.

In 2015-16, more than one in five children in their first year of school was obese or overweight in England.

The report, “Calorie reduction: The scope and ambition for action,” calls for the food industry to cut calories in core products consumed by families by 20% by 2024.

In a separate initiative, the agency launched its latest One You campaign to persuade adults to eat fewer calories at each meal: 400 for breakfast and 600 each for lunch and dinner, called the 400-600-600 plan.

One You is aimed at getting middle-age adults to lead healthier lives, and it has tackled drinking, smoking and exercise. The new prong aims to make people think about just how many calories they are consuming, particularly outside the home. It estimates that adults consume 200 to 300 calories in excess each day.

Although the calorie reduction program will devise guidelines for foods consumed by children, adults generally eat the same foods, meaning the program will help all family members reduce calorie consumption, the report states.

The campaign is targeting pizzas, ready meals, ready-made sandwiches, meat products, sauces