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Sugar, Tobacco and Alcohol

by mortadm, on 3rd February 2012 | 0 comments

Sugar is so harmful that it should be controlled and taxed in the same way as tobacco and alcohol,” according to health experts quoted in today’s Daily Express. The researchers say that sugar indirectly contributes to 35 million deaths a year worldwide. The news is based on a comment article by US health scientists, who argue that there has been a massive rise in diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes since we began eating more sugar contained in processed food. The researchers argue that many of the health effects of excess sugar consumption are similar to those of alcohol, and that sugar should, therefore, be controlled and taxed in a similar way. They advocate introducing a tax on processed foods with added sugar, limiting sales during school hours and placing age limits on purchase. Interestingly, the authors rate sugar as more dangerous to health than saturated fat and salt, which they call dietary “bogeymen”. It is important to highlight that the researchers’ article is a comment piece and, therefore, primarily reflects their views and opinions, rather than presenting direct research on the issue. While it is certainly an interesting concept, there is still a lack of evidence supporting the effectiveness of such measures and, crucially, whether the public would actually accept them.

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