Posts

Would you support a sugar tax?

CBC Radio Maritime Connection 

Following the news that the province of Newfoundland & Labrador was introducing a sugar levy in April 2022, Stop Marketing to Kids Coalition co-chair Dr. Tom Warshawski was interviewed on CBC Radio’s Maritimes Connection program to discuss the benefits of a sugar levy. Listen here

Study exposes cognitive vulnerabilities to soft drink advertisements

News Medical Life Sciences 
A new study from Flinders University, published in Appetite, found participants who found it difficult to resist sweet drinks compared to non-sweetened control beverages (e.g., water) – were more responsive to the ads than those without these tendencies. The Australian study compared the ability of 127 university-age students (18-25 year olds) to withstand or succumb to the urge to reach for a soft drink when viewing television advertisements. Read more

Taxing sugar is good for all

Cosmos 

A study out of the University of Cambridge found that, a year after the introduction of a sugar tax in the UK, people were still purchasing the same amount of soft drink but consuming 10% less sugar. The results are described in a paper published in The BMJ. The UK introduced the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL) on soft-drink manufacturers in April 2018. Drinks with more than 8g sugar per 100mL are taxed at £0.24/L, and drinks with 5–8g sugar per 100mL are taxed at £0.18/L. The tax aimed to encourage manufacturers to reduce the amount of sugar in their drinks. Read more

Covid 19 coronavirus: Junk food companies accused of ‘Covid-washing’ during lockdown

NZ Herald 
20 of the biggest junk and fast food brands in New Zealand have been accused of “Covid-washing” by pushing their products on the back of the nation’s lockdown according to a study from the University of Auckland. The study analyzed nearly 1400 social media posts and found about 27 per cent of the posts related to Covid-19 themes, of which more than a third linked a brand with community spirit. The study’s lead author, Dr Sarah Gerritsen, said Covid-washing portrayed a company as empathetic and contributing in a meaningful way to the pandemic response.”When, in reality, it was just another strategy to promote products and choices that are detrimental to health.” Read more

Consumption of ultra-processed foods in Canada

Statistics Canada 
A new Statistics Canada study found that the overall dietary share of ultra-processed foods remains high among Canadians, accounting for more than half of the daily energy intake among children and teenagers in 2015 (the most recent year for which data was available). However, dietary energy contributions of soft drinks, fruit juices and fruit drinks declined between 2004 and 2015, particularly among children and adolescents. Read the study

Sugar reduction reformulation progress: 77% of Canadian food and beverage products saw no changes in sugar levels over 4-year period

Food Navigator 

Using the University of Toronto’s Food Label Information Program database, researchers analyzed products from 2013 to 2017 and found most (76.6%) did not undergo changes in sugar levels, 12.4% had a decrease in total sugar and 11% had an increase in total sugar contents. You  can read the article here

Mexico’s new warning labels on junk food meet supersized opposition from U.S., EU

Chronicle Herald 
The United States, European Union, Canada and Switzerland, home to some of the world’s biggest food companies, have pressed Mexico to delay upcoming health warnings on processed food and drinks, a World Trade Organization document showed. The Mexican standard, scheduled to take effect in October, will require front-of-pack nutrition labelling that clearly describes the health risks posed when those products are high in sugars, calories, salt, and saturated or trans fat. Read the article here

Taxing sugar levels in soda could prevent 2 million US cases of diabetes and cardiovascular disease, study says

CNN

Taxes on sugary drinks, a new study has revealed, can lead to major health gains and reductions in health care costs — but just how much of a benefit they provide can vary by the design of the tax. Read the article here

Obesity researchers say Coke and Pepsi should stop targeting communities of color with ads

Fast Company 

Black children and teens see more than twice as many sugary drink ads (256 and 331 ads per year) as their white counterparts, according to a new report by the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity. Sugary drinks are also heavily advertised on Spanish-language TV, particularly Coke and Gatorade; Powerade devotes a third of its TV ad dollars to Spanish-language TV. (Only 13% of Americans speak Spanish at home.) You can read the article here

You can read the study here

Avoiding sodas may be good for your heart, new research suggests

Washington Post 
According to a study published in February in the Journal of the American Heart Association, avoiding soda may have a positive effect on heart health. Researchers from Tufts and Boston universities looked at over 12 years’ worth of data from about 6,000 adult participants in the Framingham Heart Study, a long-term, ongoing research project focused on cardiovascular health. People who had more than one serving of sugar-sweetened beverages each day over the past four years had lower HDL cholesterol and higher triglycerides – levels that may signify an increased risk of heart disease.  Read the article here