Tax imposition on sweetened beverages may reduce its intake among adolescents: JAMA
Adolescents and young adults consume more sweetened beverages than any other age group, and high sweetened beverage consumption is linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and many types of cancers. Excise taxes on sweetened beverages are one policy approach to decrease consumption of added sugars.Researchers from Philadelphia Children's Hospital conducted a largest study...
Adolescents and young adults consume more sweetened beverages than any other age group, and high sweetened beverage consumption is linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and many types of cancers. Excise taxes on sweetened beverages are one policy approach to decrease consumption of added sugars.
Researchers from Philadelphia Children's Hospital conducted a largest study to date assessing the association of a sweetened beverage tax with soda consumption in adolescents.
In this economic evaluation of school district–level Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System data from September 2013 to December 2019 compared weekly soda intake in high school students in philadelphia, a city with a sweetened beverage tax, with that in 7 comparison cities without beverage taxes. The primary outcome was the number of reported servings of soda consumed per week. Secondary outcomes were potential substitution intake comparision(juice or milk). The study included high school students, grades 9 to 12, in school districts participating in the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System.
Key findings of the study are:
-Large proportion of students were found to be overweight and obese in Philadelphia as compared against comparision cities.
-Before the tax, adolescents in the 7 comparison cities had a mean intake of 4 servings of soda per week compared with 5.4 servings per week in Philadelphia.
-Philadelphia's tax was associated with a reduction of 0.81 servings of soda per week( P = .02) 2 years after tax implementation.
-After tax implementation, adolescents in Philadelphia consumed 0.5 more servings of 100% juice per week compared with those in cities without a tax, but this difference was not statistically significant.
-The tax was associated with a reduction of 1.2 servings of soda per week (95%CI, −2.33 to −0.13 servings; P = .03)among students with obesity and0.8 servings per week (95%CI, −1.58 to−0.02 servings; P = .04) among students with either overweight or obesity.
The findings of study support literature by proving that that the implementation of a sweetened beverage tax was associated with reduced weekly servings of soda consumed by high school students. Obesity in adolescence often portends obesity in adulthood, improving health behaviors in adolescents supports a healthier lifelong trajectory.
Authors conclude:-"Beverage taxes may be an effective policy approach to improving health behaviors tied to adolescent obesity."
Source: Edmondson EK, Roberto CA, Gregory EF, Mitra N, Virudachalam S. Association of a Sweetened Beverage Tax With Soda Consumption in High School Students. JAMA Pediatr. Published online October 18, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2021.3991