Sugar as a Public Health Concern

Moved by Liberal Party of Canada (Québec)

WHEREAS there are compelling health and economic reasons why reducing sugar consumption should be a priority public health objective, including:

  • due to the way it is metabolized in the body, sugar should be considered a dose dependent toxin, similar to alcohol and other drugs;
  • excessive sugar consumption causes diabetes, heart disease, fatty liver disease and tooth decay and is strongly correlated to cancer and dementia;
  • treating chronic diseases in increasingly young people will present a growing, unsustainable burden on Canada’s social services, especially health care;
  • two major financial institutions (Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse) have called attention to the threat to economic growth posed by sugar consumption driving diabetes.

WHEREAS refined carbohydrates, present in processed food, are quickly converted into sugar by the body;

WHEREAS blame for diet related chronic diseases and obesity is attributed to individual failings, ignoring the role played by:

  • outdated and misleading nutritional advice from health professionals;
  • the food industry;
  • lack of government regulation.

BE IT RESOLVED that the LPC urge the Government of Canada to prioritize, within the Public Health Agency of Canada, the development of a national strategy to reduce the excess consumption of sugar and refined carbohydrates, one that:

  • incorporates the 21 recommendations contained in the Senate’s report “Obesity in Canada: A Whole-of-Society Approach for a Healthier Canada” (published March 2016);
  • reduces the recommended daily value of added sugar to 5% of total daily energy intake (6-9 teaspoons per day), as recommended by the World Health Organization.