Brits are still undecided as to whether a proposed 'fat tax' on high-calorie foods would actually encourage healthier eating. The latest YouGov poll found 45% would support a new tax on low-nutrient, high-fat and sugar foods where the money amassed would mean other taxes could be lowered, but 45% would oppose such a measure.
But the majority agree that the idea of obese people being forced to pay for treatment for issues caused by their weight, and the idea of barring such patients from treatment until they have lost the weight, should not go ahead.
Researchers at Oxford and Nottingham University have claimed that if unhealthy foods were subject to VAT, it could save up to 3,200 lives a year. Prime Minister David Cameron has proposed similar measures to those seen in Denmark – which is currently the only European nation to levy a ‘fat tax’ on calorie-rich foods containing more than 2.3% saturated fat.
Mr Cameron says that obesity is now on the brink of overtaking smoking and drinking as the ‘biggest health challenge’ facing Britain.
"‘I am worried about the costs to the health service [and] the fact that some people are going to have shorter lives than their parents," he said,