Strengthening Fiscal Policies and Regulations to Promote Healthy Diets in Sri Lanka

30 January 2020
Medical Research Institute (MRI), Sri Lanka

Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) have been a significant health challenge for Sri Lanka for several decades. Lifestyle choices such as tobacco use, consumption of of alcohol, physical inactivity, and unhealthy diets are among factors that increase the risk of NCDs.

Recognising the importance of tackling these factors, the IPS launched a project on ‘Strengthening Fiscal Policies and Regulations to Promote Healthy Diets in Sri Lanka’, in collaboration with the Medical Research Institute (MRI) of the Ministry of Health. The study aims to examine the effectiveness of three recently introduced fiscal and regulatory interventions for reducing unhealthy food habits: a) a tax on sugar sweetened beverages (SSBs), b) a traffic light labeling system indicating sugar levels in SSBs, c) healthy canteen in schools (HCS) initiative aimed at improving the healthy food choices available for students in schools.

The research team includes IPS researchers, Dr. Nisha Arunatilake, Priyanka Jayawardena, Sunimalee Madurawala, Ashani Abayasekara, and Chamini Thilanka and Dr. Renuka Jayatissa from the MRI.

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