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Government Should Regulate Sugary Drink Consumption To Control Obesity, Healthcare Costs

September 18, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Many foods contribute to excess calorie intake and obesity but, according to health experts, sugary drinks are particularly at fault. Consumption of sugary beverages has tripled since the 1970s, as drink sizes have increased from 6.5 or 12 ounces to 16, 20, 32 and 64 ounces. New York City health commissioner Thomas A. Farley believes government can play a role in controlling consumption of sugary drinks, and thus controlling the rising healthcare costs associated with obesity and heart disease. In a JAMA article, he notes that New York City has supported a 1-cent-per-ounce excise tax on sugary drinks and the city's health department approved a cap on the portion size of sugary drinks served at restaurants.
Farley TA, "The Role of Government in Preventing Excess Calorie Consumption: The Example of New York City", JAMA, September 18, 2012, © American Medical Association
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