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Treat soda same as tobacco: Study

A recent study has asked authorities to treat soda same as tobacco with the aim to curb the growing obesity epidemic.

A Southern California public health study released on Thursday has shown that a wide majority of residents support the idea of implementation of tax on sugary drinks and soda and restricting junk food advertisements aimed at children to help fight obesity.

Experts against the consumption of soda state that it should also include in its labels the risks for developing diseases such as obesity and diabetes. This 'war' of sorts against the product will be quite similar to the campaign against tobacco.

The studies on over-consumption of soda, sweets and junk food, have led to mounting friction between the beverage industry and health advocates over the best way to fight obesity and diabetes.

Recently, the Center for Science in the Public Interest has called for a gathering aimed at planning the necessary measures to take in response to the people's attitude and often positive take on these sweetened and sugary beverages. It is for this reason that the findings from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health hold significance.

Paul Simon, head of chronic disease prevention for the county and lead author of the study, said that nearly two-thirds of those surveyed by the county in a broad 2011 assessment of public attitudes toward health issues, said they supported a soda tax, and three-quarters favored limiting junk food advertising.

Public health experts across the US have been trying for ways to reduce consumption of sugary drinks and junk food, but lawmakers and voters have generally opposed enacting taxes or other regulations. Recently, a 'Soda Summit' that aims to provide transparency, in informing the public of the real truth behind the sodas, is being proposed.