Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Sugar tax would put America's medical bills on a diet

Date:
January 21, 2014
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
Taxing sugar – before it’s added to processed foods – would reduce obesity-related disease in America, and cut medical costs to boot, according to research.

Taxing sugar – before it’s added to processed foods – would reduce obesity-related disease in America, and cut medical costs to boot, according to research at Cornell and Stanford universities.

“Nutrient-specific taxes could have an important effect in inducing healthier purchasing behavior among consumers,” Cornell’s Michael Lovenheim and Stanford’s Matthew Harding write in a January 2014 working paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

A nationwide tax on sugar would have the broadest positive effect because so many processed foods have lots of sugar – and consumption of fat and salt in those sugary products would be collaterally reduced when consumers are faced with a sugar tax. A 20 percent tax on sugar, for example, would reduce consumption – and calories – by about 18 percent.
“Taxes on nutrients would do much more to support healthier nutritional choices than would taxes on products,” said Lovenheim, associate professor of policy analysis and management in Cornell’s College of Human Ecology.

Unhealthy-nutrient taxes would be even more effective if they were applied on a nationwide basis, Lovenheim thinks, to keep people from crossing state lines (or going online) to get tax-free unhealthy goods.

“In a way, we’re already paying a ‘fat tax’ for eating unhealthy food and failing to exercise,” the Cornell economist observed. “Obesity-related disease costs American taxpayers and health care consumers more than $147 billion a year.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cornell University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Michael Lovenheim and Matthew Harding. The Effect of Prices on Nutrition: Comparing the Impact of Product- and Nutrient-specific Taxes. National Bureau of Economic Research, January 2014

Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "Sugar tax would put America's medical bills on a diet." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121130604.htm>.
Cornell University. (2014, January 21). Sugar tax would put America's medical bills on a diet. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121130604.htm
Cornell University. "Sugar tax would put America's medical bills on a diet." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140121130604.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Calling the Ebola outbreak in West Africa a potential threat to global security, President Barack Obama is ordering 3,000 U.S. military personnel to the stricken region amid worries that the outbreak is spiraling out of control. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Nearly $1.0 billion dollars is needed to fight the Ebola outbreak raging in west Africa, the United Nations say, warning that 20,000 could be infected by year end. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is ordering U.S. military personnel to West Africa to deal with the Ebola outbreak, which is he calls a potential threat to global security. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins