0849 GMT April 03, 2020
Researchers from the Australian National University (ANU) studied nearly 40,000 people in Thailand between 2005 and 2013, and found that thousands of cases of the disease could be prevented annually if they gave up drinking sugary and fizzy drinks, according to news.xinhuanet.com.
Lead author of the study, Keren Papier said, "Over 4,000 cases of type 2 diabetes could be prevented annually in the Thai population if people avoided drinking sugary drinks daily.
"Thai women, who are at double the risk of type 2 diabetes from drinking sugary drinks, would be the main beneficiaries (of cutting it out of one's diet)."
Papier said the results have further highlighted the need for a tax to be put on sugary drinks, because in addition to reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, a sugar tax would do wonders for the Australian government's bottom line, citing a similar tax in Mexico which has so far raised $2.6 billion.
She said, "A reduction in sugary drink consumption is likely reduce rates of diabetes in Australia.
"Several countries including Mexico, the US, France and Chile have already started acting on sugary drinks by imposing or committing to a sugar tax.
"Findings from the US and Mexico show that applying the tax has led to a 17 and 21 percent decrease respectively in the purchase of taxed beverages among low-income households.
"Sugary drinks are an ideal target for public health interventions to help control the type 2 diabetes epidemic since they have no nutritional value and do not protect against disease."
The team uncovered that between 1983 and 2009, the average annual sugar intake for Thais jumped from 13kg per year to 31kg per year.