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Monday, June 15, 2009

Congress Considers Soda Tax

As Congress considers how best to pay for health care reform, some have suggested extending the federal excise tax to include soft drinks and alcohol. Although key members of the Senate Finance Committee doubt that the measure will become law, some health professionals have advocated the policy.

The author of a recent study on the subject argues that a soda tax could raise billions of dollars while also discouraging the consumption of beverages that contribute to obesity and diabetes. Not surprisingly, the American Beverage Association calls such a tax discriminatory and ineffective.

Our dietitians often remind us that a calorie is a calorie, however it is consumed. So what do you think? Is it unfair to single out soft drinks, or is it reasonable to curb unhealthy behaviors through taxation?

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