Promoting Healthy Food Choices
Globally, millions of deaths each year can be attributed to diet-related illnesses like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. Unless we take action now, the number of deaths related to unhealthy diets will continue to rise, an avoidable tragedy that also places stress on national health care systems and economies. The Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Food Policy Program is addressing this issue by raising public awareness of the problem and supporting policies to promote healthier diets.
Eight million deaths are attributed to poor diets annually, which can cause and exacerbate a wide array of health issues and strain health care systems around the world. The Food Policy Program is tackling the issue by raising public awareness of the problem and supporting policies to promote healthier diets.
Soda and other sugary drinks are major contributors to rising rates of obesity, and small increases in sales taxes can help to drive down consumption. Bloomberg Philanthropies helped Mexico pass a one-peso per liter tax on sugary drinks, which helped reduce sales by nearly 10% in two years. Since that landmark tax, more than 30 additional countries, cities, and regions have implemented similar policies — including a number of cities in the U.S., where Bloomberg Philanthropies has worked with local partners to successfully pass small tax increases on sugary drinks.
Top photo: Billboards in Mexico highlighting the health risks of sugary beverages as part of an obesity prevention campaign led by local partners.