The Tribune (NZ) - - WELCOME - – Richard

‘‘Aspoon­ful of sugar makes the medicine go down’’. Sugar seems to make just about ev­ery­thing go down.

The trou­ble is, Ki­wis ap­pear to be in­gest­ing sugar by the shov­el­ful, and the pro­lif­er­a­tion of sugar in our di­ets cou­pled with in­creas­ing obe­sity, has brought about calls for a sugar tax.

Ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional In­sti­tute for Health In­no­va­tion, a tax on fizzy drinks could have the win-win-win ef­fect of sav­ing lives, curb­ing fu­ture pub­lic health ex­pen­di­ture, while gen­er­at­ing be­tween $30 – $40 mil­lion for health pro­grammes.

Re­searchers reckon a 20 per cent levy on pro­cessed ‘‘nu­tri­ent poor’’ bev­er­ages, linked to type 2 di­a­betes and car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease, would re­duce ex­cess en­ergy in­take, and save 70 lives a year.

How much ex­tra re­search will it take be­fore this is ac­knowl­edged by our law­mak­ers? We used to be hu­man wel­fare trendsetters; now we fol­low the rest of the world like sheep. –

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