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WHO Supports Taxes on Sugary Drinks

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AS IT IS

WHO Supports Taxes on Sugary Drinks


October 23, 2016

e World Health Organization says the widespread use of sugar in food products and
drinks is a major concern in many areas. So WHO ocials are calling on governments
to require taxes on sugary drinks in an eort to limit their usage and popularity.
e ocials believe the taxes also would reduce the risk of health problems resulting
from obesity.
Obesity is a condition in which the body stores large, unhealthy amounts of fat. Obese
individuals are considered overweight.
A new report says that in 2014 more than one-third of the adults in the world were
overweight, and 500 million were considered obese.
e United Nations agency estimates that in 2015, 42 million children under age 5 were
either overweight or obese. It says that number represents an increase of about 11
million during the past 15 years. Almost half of these boys and girls live in Asia and
one-fourth in Africa.
e U.N. agency blames unhealthy diets for a rise in diabetes cases. ere are 422
million cases of the disease worldwide. WHO says 1.5 million people die from it every
year. It says the use of sugar in food products, like sugary drinks, is a major reason for
the increase in rates of obesity and diabetes.
Temo Waqanivalu is with the agencys Department for the Prevention on
Non-Communicable Diseases. He told VOA that taxing sugary drinks would reduce
consumption and save lives.
If we increase the tax and that gets passed on to the consumers resulting in a 20
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percent increase in price, you are more likely to get a 20 percent reduction in the
consumption. In addition, you will be more likely to achieve the ultimate health
outcome we are aiming for, which is the reduction in obesity and diabetes.
Waganivalu noted that Mexico enacted a 10 percent tax on sugary drinks in 2014. He
said by the end of the year, there was a 6 percent drop in the consumption of such
drinks. Among poor people, the number of people who consumed sugary drinks
dropped by 17 percent.
e WHO report says China has more obese people than any other country -- 43 million
men and 46 million women. e United States is home to almost 42 million obese men
and 46 million women who are obese.
e WHO says people should limit the amount of sugar they consume. It says they
should keep their sugar intake to below 10 percent of their total energy needs, and
reduce it to less than 5 percent for improved health.
It warns people to be careful in their calculations because sugar is everywhere.
Im Marsha James.

Lisa Schlein reported this story from Geneva for VOANews.com. Christopher JonesCruise adapted her report for Learning English. George Grow was the editor.
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Words in is Story
diabetes n. a serious disease in which the body cannot properly control the amount
of sugar in your blood because it does not have enough insulin
consumption n. the act of eating or drinking something

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WHO Supports Taxes on Sugary Drinks

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achieve v. to get or reach (something) by working hard


ultimate adj. happening or coming at the end of a process or series of events
outcome n. something that happens at the end of a process
calculation n. a process or result of calculating or counting something

28/10/2016 18:40