The American Medical Association has voted in favour of a policy that promotes taxation of sugar-sweetened beverages, but stopped short of a full endorsement of the policy.
Physicians from the American Medical Association (AMA) met in Chicago on Wednesday and recommended levying taxes on sugary beverages in order to help fund anti-obesity education.
However, they failed to endorse a policy to levy taxes on sodas to control their use.
Food Safety News reported that a report by the AMA's Council on Science and Public Health stated "a penny-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened drinks would lower obesity rates by 5 percent and would save $17 billion in medical costs over 10 years." Furthermore the AMA cited research that linked added sugars to increased weight and Type II diabetes.
Sugar-sweetened beverages account for approximately half of Americans' added sugar intake according to the AMA. Physicians supported the idea of required obesity education.
Not all physicians supported the idea the of taxing sugary beverages. According to the Blaze some felt "soda taxes would disproportionately hurt the poor and disadvantaged," and some argued "taxes shouldn’t be used to force people to make healthful decisions they should be making on their own."
Canada.com reported the American Beverage Association opposes the AMA's recommendation. They released a statement saying "funding anti-obesity programs through discriminatory taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages is misguided."