It's time to put a tax on sugary drinks: Cancer Council
THE Cancer Council has renewed its call for a sugary drinks tax to be considered, with Queenslanders at serious risk of long-term health problems from overconsumption.
An investigation into tax options is part of a range of recommendations to reduce sugary drink consumption released by Cancer Council, Diabetes Australia and the Heart Foundation (Victoria).
Cancer Council Queensland spokeswoman Katie Clift said the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages was associated with serious health issues.
"One can of soft drink alone can contain up to 10 teaspoons of sugar - and many people think it's acceptable to have one can a day - it isn't," Ms Clift said.
"Consuming sugar-sweetened beverages is associated with weight gain and obesity, which can lead to some cancers, type 2 diabetes and heart problems.
"Obesity is a growing problem in our state - 65 per cent of Queenslanders are overweight or obese, and alarmingly, 33 per cent don't even realise it."
Ms Clift said limiting the consumption of sugary drinks was an integral part of making people healthier.
"While obesity is caused by a range of complex factors, we know that eating a healthy diet and limiting sugary, fatty and salty food and drinks is an important aspect of maintaining a healthy weight," she said.
"A range of strategies to curb our country's growing obesity epidemic have been tried in the past - but clearly haven't worked.
"We need to explore new, innovative options and consider a multi-faceted approach to improve the long-term health of Queenslanders."
Would you support a tax on sugar-laden drinks?
This poll ended on 11 January 2014.
No, I don't think it's fair to tax sugary drinks
Yes, I think it will stop people consuming as much sugar
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Restrictions on marketing sugary drinks to children, reducing the availability of sugar-sweetened beverages in children's settings and workplaces and investigating tax options are among the policy recommendations.
According to the Cancer Council, around 14 per cent of Queenslanders admit to consuming non-diet soft drink at least daily, and 16 per cent of children aged 5-17 years consume non-diet soft drink and non-diet flavoured drinks at least daily.
Cancer Council Queensland recommends Queenslanders limit their consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, and instead drink water or unflavoured low-fat milk.
Queenslanders are invited to join the QUEST toward a healthier lifestyle to reduce their risk of cancer, via www.quest.org.au.
More information about Cancer Council Queensland is available at www.cancerqld.org.au.