WHO calls for special taxes on sugary drinks

WHO calls for special taxes on sugary drinks

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Again sugar tax on sugary drinks requested
More and more people worldwide are overweight and obese. The World Health Organization (WHO) is now campaigning for the introduction of special taxes on sugary drinks to combat the problem.

High sugar consumption endangers health
Health experts keep warning: avoid consuming too much sugar. If consumed frequently, the sweetener can lead to enormous health problems such as tooth decay, obesity, high blood pressure or diabetes. A lot of sugar is absorbed in sweet lemonades. Such soft drinks are often the cause of obesity. The World Health Organization (WHO) is now calling for special taxes on sugary drinks to be introduced to combat the problem of overweight.

WHO demands tax on sugary drinks
As the AFP news agency reports, the WHO said in Geneva on Tuesday that there is increasing evidence that this slows down the consumption of such drinks. By introducing taxes, governments can "reduce suffering and save lives," said WHO head of non-communicable disease prevention department Douglas Bettcher.

According to the WHO, taxes that raise the price of sugary soft drinks by 20 percent or more are particularly effective. According to the information, a price increase by a fifth leads to a fifth less sugar drinks being consumed in the respective country. And a price increase of 50 percent would reduce consumption by half.

In some countries, the problem of overweight is already addressed with a sugar-fat tax. However, a majority of Germans reject the sugar tax.

Reduce the rate of overweight people
According to the agency's announcement, the WHO recommendation follows a meeting of tax experts last year who were tasked with reviewing various supporting documents and case studies from several countries to determine which approach would best help increase the rate of overweight people reduce. For example, a sugar tax introduced in Mexico in 2014, with price increases of ten percent, led to a six percent reduction in consumption.

No more than six teaspoons of sugar a day
The WHO has long recommended that a maximum of ten percent of the daily calorie intake should consist of sugar. In the meantime, she is in favor of reducing the limit to five percent. That means that no more than six small teaspoons of sugar should be consumed per day. However, a soft drink contains about ten teaspoons of sugar.

WHO estimates that around one in three adults worldwide is overweight. Over half a billion people are even obese. In 2015, around 42 million children under the age of five were overweight or obese. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: WHO calls for tax on sugary drinks to reduce obesity, diabetes (June 2022).


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