June, 9 2017

Ryde Hospital is making healthy normal by removing sugary drinks from sale in its vending machines and cafes by December 2017.

Healthier food and drink options will be offered throughout the hospital to make up at least 75 per cent of the offering.

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Ryde Hospital site operations manager Matthew Noone said the hospital wanted to send a clear message about healthy eating and drinking.

"That’s why we are phasing out sugary drinks which have no nutritional value by the end of the year," Mr Noone said.

"As health leaders, it’s up to us to set a good example and this is a great step in the right direction."

This NSW Health initiative is part of the new Healthy Choices policy framework with NSW being the first state in Australia to remove sugary drinks from its health facilities.

One in two adults and more than one in five children in NSW are overweight or obese and there is a strong link between the consumption of sugary drinks, obesity and related diseases.

NSW Health chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant said NSW Health was working toward a five per cent reduction in overweight and obesity rates in adults by 2020.

"There’s no better way to start than right here on our own doorstep," Dr Chant said.

With the initiative NSW Health hoped to not only offer better food and drink choices in its own facilities but also show how a workable strategy could be successfully implemented across any organisation to assist healthier choices in any staffing environment.

More information on Healthy Food and Drink in NSW Health Facilities can be found at www.health.nsw.gov.au/heal

Tips to make healthy normal can be found at www.makehealthynormal.nsw.gov.au