The UK has introduced a sugar tax on all soft drinks by 2018. If it were introduced in Australia, a sugar tax could save 1,600 lives, and raise $400 million per year, not to mention reduce incidence of diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Recent research at Queensland University of Technology likens effects of sugar on the brain to cocaine. Dopamine levels which control the brain’s reward and pleasure centres, are elevated with sugar consumption in the same way that drugs of addiction are. Over time, excess sugar consumption causes a reduction in dopamine, leading to more consumption in order to get the same reward. 20 to 30 years ago, tobacco companies denied that tobacco was addictive, and were claiming that smokers could quit if they had the motivation. I wonder if manufacturers of soft drinks will put the same argument forward.