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AMA Says Soda Tax Would Help Reduce Obesity

06/21/12

  10:32:36 am, by MedBen5   , 166 words,  
Categories: News, Wellness

AMA Says Soda Tax Would Help Reduce Obesity

Reuters reports that the American Medical Association has recommended that government on local, state or federal levels consider imposing a soda tax to aid in the fight against obesity. The physician’s group stopped short of an outright endorsement of such a tax, however.

The AMA stated that sugar-sweetened drinks account for almost half of Americans’ added sugar intake, and reducing their consumption would go a long way in lowering the intake of sugar and empty calories.

While recognizing that obesity is caused by many factors, the AMA noted that several studies have demonstrated a link to increased body weight, as well as a rise in type 2 diabetes and other health conditions. A tax on sugary beverages, the group said, would help pay for education campaigns and other obesity-related programs.

Raising taxes on sugar-sweetened drinks to a penny per ounce could potentially lower obesity rates by 5% and cut medical costs by $157 billion within a decade, the AMA Council on Science and Public Health said in its report.

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