Should there be a sugar tax on soft drinks?

woman drinking fizzy drinkIn the last couple of weeks, the government announced that they would be introducing a sugar tax on soft drinks and I have to tell you, it was music to my ears. 

While I am by no means averse to a chocolate or two once in a while, refined sugar is one of those things that my life is wholly better without and its impact on our general health is only just beginning to be taken seriously.

My personal interest in the impact of refined sugars on the body started when I was being treated for cancer, before the advent of Rock on Divas.  Since then I have largely cut out and replaced all refined sugar in my diet with natural alternatives, and as a result I have more energy and am healthier than I have ever been in my life.

The sugar tax to me is a move towards the government understanding that we should not be punished in costs for healthy eating and drinking, and pushing manufacturers to make more considered decisions about the ingredients they put in their products.

While the downside to this is that the costs will no doubt end up with the consumer, the tax is targeted at manufacturers and the government claim that it will raise £520 million to be put towards primary school sports.  Companies have two years before the tax is in place to give them time to cut the amount of sugar in their products, so it’s a case of watch this space.

Jamie Oliver has been a big campaigner for healthy food incentives, and the sugar tax in particular, and naturally he was ecstatic in his response on Twitter about it all, but understandably there was also a counter argument and an accompanying contingent who were less pleased about the proposals.

For me the tax means one major thing, it’s about awareness.  We are always being given so much information about what we should and shouldn’t eat on the Internet, in magazines and on the TV and radio, that the messages can get confusing.  But this is a clear and decisive acknowledgement that for our long-term health refined sugar needs to be taken seriously and made easier to avoid in our daily diets.


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