Emirates Hospital Dubai: Decision to Tax Sugary Drinks Hailed

Dubai, UAE – Emirates Hospital’s, a subsidiary of Emirates Healthcare Company, leading paediatrician, Dr Abeer Khayat, renounces the consumption of sugary drinks among children and youth. Sugary soft drinks and energy drinks are taxed in the UAE (effective as of October 1st 2017). The foremost paediatricians from Emirates Hospital have backed this decision as it would benefit school students the most.

Over 1,000 children of the GEMS Wellington International School, Dubai were educated on the benefits of healthy eating habits by Dr Abeer Khayat, paediatric consultant at Emirates Hospital Dubai, during the morning assembly. Through interactive discussion with children, Dr Abeer emphasised the importance of making good choices on what children pick for their drinks and snacks. The students keenly listened to Dr Abeer as she quoted the disadvantages of consuming sugary drinks and its role in causing tooth decay, excessive weight gain, and reducing intake of more nutritious foods such as milk and dairy products.

This is one of several activities that the Emirates Hospital supported in an effort to increase awareness of childhood obesity and educate children and families on healthy lifestyles. During this event, Emirates Hospital distributed 1,200 goodie bags to the students, containing brochures, caps, and highlighters among other things.

Dr Abeer spoke in support of and welcomed the newly reinstated ‘sin tax’ on sugary drinks; “This is a long-awaited step toward ending childhood obesity, and in fact, it is one of the strategies that has been recommended by World Health Organization Commission on Ending Childhood obesity”.

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