According to experts, more than half of the adults in Germany are overweight, almost a quarter are even obese (adipose). A large proportion of children and young people are also too fat. Several factors can be considered as causes for obesity. An unhealthy diet is very important here. By raising taxes on unhealthy foods such as soft drinks, the wave of overweight could possibly be stopped.
Soft drinks are not only one of the main causes of the increase in overweight and obesity, but they also increase the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and tooth decay. Experts are now demanding a sugar levy on these calorie bombs.
As reported by the German Diabetes Society (DDG), the German Alliance for Noncommunicable Diseases (DANK) is calling for binding measures against the high consumption of sugared soft drinks in Germany on the occasion of the 3rd Sugar Reduction Summit. “Voluntary agreements have too little effect on soft drinks,” says DANK spokeswoman Barbara Bitzer, “so a levy is needed to encourage manufacturers to be more innovative.
Successes in Great Britain
A study published in the trade journal “BMC Medicine” has shown that Great Britain has succeeded in reducing the average sugar content in soft drinks by an average of 34 percent within two years with such a soft drink tax. “We need such a measure finally also in Germany to protect the health of the population.
The German national reduction strategy for soft drinks provides for a sugar reduction of less than half the amount already achieved by Great Britain. By the year 2025, the sugar content in this country is to be reduced by only 15 percent on average. Many of these drinks will still contain far too much sugar even after that.
Not only the average value is important, but also what the customer has available and what is actually bought. A sugar tax demonstrably improves both.
According to a study published in the trade journal “The Lancet Public Health”, a tax in Portugal has reduced the range of highly sugared products from 60.9 percent to 36.8 percent of all soft drinks. And in Great Britain, sales of medium and highly sugared drinks have been halved as a result of the soft drink tax.
At the same time, sales of water and low-sugar drinks have risen by 40 percent. According to the figures, the majority of British beverage manufacturers now see the sugar tax as having a positive effect on their business – they are selling more new, low-sugar products. Therefore Germany should also use the great health-promoting potential of a soft drink tax. (ad)
Experts demand sugar levy on soft drinks
WashingtonNewsday Health and Wellness.