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Approaches to Reducing Consumption of Sugar

Excess sugar consumption is linked to obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related chronic diseases that have tremendous social and economic costs. The United States currently faces the highest obesity and diabetes prevalence in human history. This national health crisis disproportionately impacts historically marginalized communities and thus perpetuates health inequities. Reducing population-level consumption of sugar is one of the most promising strategies for addressing these pressing public health, social, and economic concerns.  

Our Approach

In 2018, the Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC), in collaboration with the Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation’s Health Law and Policy Clinic, launched the Approaches to Reducing Consumption of Sugar (ARCS) initiative to identify locally-supported policies that will reduce sugar consumption and build capacity for policy change. The ARCS project specifically aims to (1) support community-led policy change through direct pro bono technical assistance (TA) to community organizations, food policy councils, and local, state, and tribal government entities across the United States; (2) advance advocacy and policy change at the federal level; and (3) deliver resources that will help promote healthier food environments on a broader scale in the form of a virtual webinar series and a Sugar Reduction Law and Policy Toolkit.  


Sugar Reduction Policy Virtual Webinar Series

FLPC hosted a series of online events to discuss the most equitable and effective policy options for reducing the consumption of food and beverages high in added sugar.  

Webinar 1: Food Policy for Greater Health Equity

Title of webinar on yellow-brown background with forks.
December 11, 2020

Featuring:

  • Julie Ralston Aoki, Director of Healthy Eating and Active Living Programs, Public Health Law Center, Mitchell Hamline School of Law;
  • Sara Bleich, Professor of Public Health Policy, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study;
  • Erica Kenney, Assistant Professor of Public Health Nutrition, Director of MPH Program in Nutrition, Director of PhD Program in Public Health Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health; and
  • Moderator: Christina Roberto, PhD, Mitchel J. Blutt and Margo Krody Blutt Presidential Associate Professor of Health Policy, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Director, PEACH Lab, Associate Director of CHIBE.
Click here to view slides from Webinar 1.  
Click here to view Q&A from Webinar 1. 

Webinar 2: Building Equity into Sweetened Beverage Taxes

Title of webinar on yellow-brown background with forks.
March 11, 2021

Featuring: 

  • Sabrina Adler, JD, Vice President of Law, ChangeLab Solutions; 
  • Jim Krieger, MD, MPH, Executive Director, Healthy Food America Clinical Professor of Medicine and Health Services, University of Washington; 
  • Kris Madsen, MD, MPH, Professor, Joint Medical Program, Public Health Nutrition and Community Health Sciences, University of California-Berkeley; 
  • Xavier Morales, PhD, MRP, Executive Director, The Praxis Project; and 
  • Moderator: Christina Roberto, PhD, Mitchel J. Blutt and Margo Krody Blutt Presidential Associate Professor of Health Policy, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Director, PEACH Lab, Associate Director of CHIBE. 
Click here to view slides from Webinar 2.  
Click here to view supplemental resources from Webinar 2.  

Supplemental Resources Links:

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