The Undersecretary of Health, Hugo López Gatell, said at the evening conference on Tuesday, July 21, that, in Mexico, up to 7% of deaths that occur each year are related to cardiovascular diseases derived from the consumption of sugary drinks.
Gatell said that 7% of annual deaths equal 40 thousand deaths, the same death toll that Mexico currently accumulates by Covid 19.
Find out: Cooling industry accuses Lopez-Gatell of ‘demonizing’ them and blaming them for obesity in Mexico
The Undersecretary of Health said that the source of this data is a study that was presented late last year in a scientific journal, although it did not specify which one. However, he said that on Thursday Dr. Ruy López, general director of the National Center for Preventive Programs and Disease Control, will go to the evening conference to explain and detail the data from this study on deaths in Mexico associated with the consumption of sugary drinks.
At today’s conference, the Undersecretary of Health insisted that, like tobacco use, the use of soft drinks and highly caloric industrial foods, have harmful effects on the health of Mexicans. Hence he stressed that, based on scientific evidence, he said before that sugary drinks are «bottled poison».
«Public health has evidence, and when there are, it must be said bluntly,» emphasized López Gatell, who raised more figures, such as that in Mexico 75% of the population is overweight or obese.
«The evidence is very clear, but there are many interests that have led to the concealment of information in other administrations, or to use euphemisms. But products that hurt, hurt, and we have to deter their consumption so that fewer people are unhealthy, and they do so from clear information,» Gatell concluded.
This July 20th the National Association of Soft Drinks and Carbonated Waters (ANPRAC) reacted by condemning the statements of López Gatell, who was accused of «demonizing» its sector.
«It is unheard of for a federal civil servant, with the great responsibility of being the health promoter in our country, to stigmatized an industry that fully complies with all standards and regulations,» ANPRAC said through a position.
According to the association, López-Gatell’s assertions «represent an inequitable treatment of the sector, they demonize a strategic activity for the economy and a product that is in the preference of millions of Mexicans».
«They could even shape violations of constitutional rights and international treaties,» he said.
ANPRAC considered that the official’s statements place the industry refreshing as «a public enemy to hold accountable to the health crisis facing the country for the Covid-19 pandemic, which has so far cost more than 39,000 Mexicans’s lives.»
He accused his statements of «personal encouragement against industry based on prejudice and imprecise information and represents a dangerous ideological bias.»
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