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Comment & Response
January 20, 2015

Taxes and Subsidies to Improve Diet—Reply

Author Affiliations
  • 1Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Department of Economics, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • 3New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center, Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2015;313(3):307-308. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.15641

In Reply Mr Wegman raises concerns about potential regressivity—increasing tax burdens and health declines in low-income groups, compounded by low availability of healthful choices—from our tax-subsidy proposal. We recognize that any nutrition-related policy change must not impose additional financial burden on people who can least afford it. Yet the current food environment is detrimental to the health of low-income groups, and transitional costs could be addressed by adjusting other payments to low-income households.