Posts

Study of supermarket meals gives food for thought

Medical Xpress 
A recent study in Australia found that supermarket ready-to-eat-meals generally should have been classified as unhealthy, but still received a passing grade from the Health Star ranking system.  Lead researcher Dr. Claire Pulker from the School of Public Health at Curtin University said 54 percent of the meals were found to be unhealthy according to the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating. As more people are buying these products due to COVID-19, it is important that they understand the health risks. Read more

Seattle Turns Soda Tax Revenue into Emergency Grocery Vouchers During Pandemic

Next City

Seattle is using its soda tax fund to provide emergency $800 grocery vouchers for 6,250 families. Sent in two installments, the first round of vouchers that can be put toward groceries have already been mailed. The second round will be mailed in April. Read the story here

Combatting a sweet tooth: the role of health marketing

Biomedical Central

A recent study published in BMC Public Health aimed to determine whether Public Health England’s Sugar Smart campaign was effective in altering dietary behaviour, by assessing any impact of the campaign on sugar intake among children aged 5-11 years. Overall it was found that the health marketing campaign raised awareness of sugar in food and drinks in both parents and children, impacting food consumption in families.  Read the article here

Cereal numbers may be deceiving

Reuters (appeared in the Montreal Gazette)

Parents may allow kids to eat too much sugary breakfast cereal because the suggested serving size is smaller than they realize, a new U.S. study suggests. The cereals with the most sugar also tend to have child-oriented marketing such as mascots, games, colours and fun shapes, researchers found in a study of brands that have pledged to help reduce added sugars in kids’ diets. “When you compute the amount of sugar by weight of the cereal, the sugar content is quite high and higher than federal recommendations,” said Jennifer Emond of the Dartmouth School of Medicine in Hanover, N.H., who wasn’t involved in the study. Read the article here

You can find the study here (paywall)

“Sugar Tax” being Applauded by Health Advocate Groups in BC

Radio NL

Dr. Tom Warshawski is praising the BC government’s decision to add the “sugar tax” to soft drinks, but believes more could be done. “I think taxes on sugary products are important, but it should be an excise tax that only the federal government can do. But, these types of discussions are really important because there’s a lot of marketing around drinking sugary drinks, in favour of it and kids are bombarded by it.” Read the article here

See also The Globe and Mail (subscriber paywall)|  Doctor says B.C.’s tax on sugary drinks will help kids lose weight, improve health 

Are Foods Labeled ‘Low Sugar’ Misleading Consumers?

New York Times

A recent study that examined millions of grocery store purchases in the United States found that dubious claims about sugar, salt and fat were common. Many fruit juices that claimed to be low in sugar, for example, tended to have added sugars and more sugar than comparable juices with no claims on them. Some breakfast cereals labeled low in calories had more calories than the cereals that did not make calorie claims. Read the article here.

B.C. Budget 2020: High-income earners, pop drinkers to pay more taxes

Vancouver Sun

The government will end a Provincial Sales Tax exemption on sugary drinks, such as pop, starting July 1. Adding the seven-per-cent PST to such beverages will generate more than $30 million annually. “I think it’s interesting if you take a look at the largest consumption of pop, sweetened drinks, it is 14 to 18 year olds,” said Finance Minister Carole James. “We want to make sure we’re doing our part to set them on the stage of having a healthy life ahead.” Read more.

Sugary Drink Consumption Plunges in Chile After New Food Law

The New York Times

A study found that a law requiring warning labels on unhealthy foods made a swift difference in purchases of sodas, bottled water and juices. Consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks dropped practically 25 per cent in the 18 months after Chile adopted a raft of laws that included promoting restrictions on unhealthy meals, front-of-package warning labels and a ban on junk meals in schools. Read more

‘Sugar tax’ drives down sugar content in soft drinks, study finds

BBC Science Focus

The sugar content of soft drinks has undergone a “striking” reduction since the introduction of a sugar levy in the UK, researchers have found. Drinks manufacturers have cut the amount of sugar in their products since the levy of between 18p and 24p a litre was introduced in April 2018. The Oxford University research, published in BMC Medicine, claims there has been a 29 per cent reduction in the total amount of sugar sold in soft drinks in the UK between 2015 and 2018. 

You can read the article here

Sweet spot: Norwegians cut sugar intake to lowest level in 44 years

The Guardian

An annual report on the Norwegian diet reported that average annual consumption of sugar had plummeted from 43kg to 24kg per person between 2000 and 2018 – including a 27% reduction in the past decade – to a level lower than that recorded in 1975.  Norway has had a sugar tax since 1922 and more recently has created separate taxes for confectionary and sugary drinks.

Read the article here.