Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

How many lives could a soda tax save?

10.01.2012
UCSF analysis suggests penny-per-ounce tax on sugary beverages would prevent heart disease, stroke and diabetes and save billions in healthcare costs

Every year, Americans drink 13.8 billion gallons of soda, fruit punch, sweet tea, sports drinks, and other sweetened beverages—a mass consumption of sugar that is fueling soaring obesity and diabetes rates in the United States.

Now a group of scientists at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (SFGH) and Columbia University have analyzed the effect of a nationwide tax on these sugary drinks.

They estimate slapping a penny-per-ounce tax on sweetened beverages would prevent nearly 100,000 cases of heart disease, 8,000 strokes, and 26,000 deaths every year.

"You would also prevent 240,000 cases of diabetes per year," said Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, an associate professor of medicine and of epidemiology and biostatistics at UCSF and acting director of the Center for Vulnerable Populations at SFGH.

In addition to $13 billion in direct tax revenue, Bibbins-Domingo and her colleagues estimated that such a tax would save the public $17 billion per year in healthcare-related expenses due to the decline of obesity-related diseases.

"Our hope is that these types of numbers are useful for policy makers to weigh decisions," she said.

The High Cost of High Calorie Drinks

Consumption of beverages high in calories but poor in nutritional value is the number one source of added sugar and excess calories in the American diet. Sugar- sweetened drinks are linked to type 2 diabetes and weight gain.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention listed reducing the intake of these beverages as one of its chief obesity prevention strategies in 2009, and several states and cities, including California and New York City, are already considering such taxes.

The analysis by Bibbins-Domingo and her colleagues is among the first study to generate concrete estimates of the health benefits and cost savings of such a tax. They modeled these benefits by taking into account how many sodas and sugary beverages Americans drink every year and estimating how much less they would consume if a penny-per-ounce tax were imposed on these drinks. Economists have estimated that such a tax would reduce consumption by 10 to 15 percent over a decade.

They then modeled how this reduction would play out in terms of reducing the burdens of diabetes, heart disease and their associated healthcare costs.

The article, "A Penny-Per-Ounce Tax On Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Would Cut Health And Cost Burdens Of Diabetes," by Y. Claire Wang, Pamela Coxson, Yu-Ming Shen, Lee Goldman and Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo appears in the January issue of Health Affairs. See: http://dx.doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2011.0410

This work was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the American Heart Association, Western States Affiliate.

UCSF is a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care.

Related Information:

U.S. Consumption of Sweet Beverages

13,800,000,000 gallons—total amount consumed by Americans in 2009 45 gallons—average U.S. consumption per person per year 17 teaspoons—the amount of sugar in a typical 22-oz sweet drink 70,000 calories—the average amount every American consumes per year in sweetened beverages Source: http://dx.doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2011.0410

Diabetes in the United States

25,800,000—number of Americans who have diabetes 8.3—percentage of the U.S. population affected $174,000,000,000—annual cost of diabetes in the United States. 7th—leading cause of death in the United States Source: CDC

Related Links:

UCSF Center for Vulnerable Populations at SFGH http://cvp.ucsf.edu/

CA Diabetes Program http://www.caldiabetes.org

Related Stories: Sugar Is a Poison, Says UCSF Obesity Expert http://www.ucsf.edu/news/2009/06/8187/obesity-and-metabolic-syndrome-driven-fructose-sugar-diet

Sugary Drinks Are a Big Contributor to New Diabetes Cases, Researchers Say http://www.ucsf.edu/news/2010/03/5982/sugary-drinks-are-big-contributor-new-diabetes-cases-researchers-say

Follow UCSF

http://www.UCSF.edu | http://www.Facebook.com/ucsf | http://www.Twitter.com/ucsf | http://www.YouTube.com/ucsf

Jason Socrates Bardi | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ucsf.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Real-time feedback helps save energy and water
08.02.2017 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht The Great Unknown: Risk-Taking Behavior in Adolescents
19.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Safe glide at total engine failure with ELA-inside

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded after a glide flight with an Airbus A320 in ditching on the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were saved.

On January 15, 2009, Chesley B. Sullenberger was celebrated world-wide: after the two engines had failed due to bird strike, he and his flight crew succeeded...

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New pop-up strategy inspired by cuts, not folds

27.02.2017 | Materials Sciences

Sandia uses confined nanoparticles to improve hydrogen storage materials performance

27.02.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

Decoding the genome's cryptic language

27.02.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>