Health experts have put out a serious warning concerning the amount of sugar consumed by children after statistics revealed that the average five-year-old in Britain eats their own body weight in sugar each year.

The stark figures from PHE (Public Health England) show that the average child between the ages of four and ten eats around 22kg of sugar each year, equivalent to the average weight of a five-year-old.

Concerns are running high over the fact that current consumption levels run an increased risk for children of tooth decay, as well as obesity and diabetes in later life. Obesity currently costs the NHS £5.1 billion a year, but that figure is forecast to triple by 2050.

The release of this information coincides with PHE’s launch of the new Sugar Smart app, which allows parents t0 check the amount of sugar in a product by scanning its barcode, as well as the Change 4 Life campaign, which encourages parents to try to reduce their child’s sugar intake. The British Retail Consortium has also called for targets in the reduction of sugar in products, with companies receiving penalties for insufficient performance.