(PRWEB UK) 14 April 2014
In the UK, 64% of adults are considered obese which is estimated to cost the NHS billions of pounds every year, but the Chief Medical Officer for England has announced that a tax on sugar could be introduced to tackle the problem.
Professor Dame Sally Davies told the Commons Health Select Committee that being overweight has become normal in Britain and that a tax on sugar was a realistic solution. However, the Food and Drink Federation responded that sugar was not the cause of obesity, when eaten as part of a balanced diet and claimed that a tax on it would affect the poor families very hard. http://ind.pn/1f5uNzs
Superintendent Pharmacist at ChemistDirect, Omar El-Gohary, said: “It tends to be that the unhealthiest foods are the cheapest. A tax on sugar (i.e. in processed food) should in theory make it less appetising in comparison to healthier alternatives such as fruits and vegetables.”
Dame Sally also recommended to the World Health Organisation that the current recommended figure of ten per cent of totally energy intake from “free sugars” (refined and fruit sugars) should be cut in half to five per cent.
El-Gohary added: “Most foods contain sugar but any restriction should be based on foods which contain high levels of refined sugar such as sweets and fizzy drinks.”
“Too much sugar can cause insulin levels to rise which can lead to increased blood pressure and an increased risk of diabetes and pancreas problems.”
This is echoed by Action on Sugar, a campaign group formed by health experts earlier this year, which works to reduce the amount of sugar added to food and soft drinks and educate people about hidden sugars. One of their key aims is to ensure sugar does not contribute more than 5% of individual’s daily total energy intake.
It is hoped that the move would help to reduce the UK’s growing weight problem. The National Obesity Forum report published earlier this year, stated that it feared that the prediction that half of the UK would be obese by 2050, was actually an understatement. http://dexpr.es/OOfbKE