Brand Paid Scientists to Minimize Sugar Levels, Study Says

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Nearly 18,000 pages of email exchanges between the company and researchers have been revealed.

In Public Health Nutrition, an investigation shows that the giant Coca-Cola would have subsidized a team of researchers, claiming to study the causes of excessive weight gain in the United States, with the aim of minimizing the impact of sugary drinks on the body. 'obesity. Information relayed by the Daily Mail.

The universities of Oxford and Bocconi (Milan), in association with the American organization Right to Know, read more than 18,000 pages of email exchanges between the Coca-Cola company and the universities of Virginia and Colorado. The latter were part of the Global Energy Balance Network (GEBN), a non-profit organization, which studied obesity from 2014 to 2015. An "email family" is mentioned to describe the network.

The team of researchers, under the guise of noble research, would have become a powerful ally for Coca-Cola. They would thus have promoted the idea that it was lack of exercise, and not unhealthy diet, that was the main driver of the obesity epidemic in the United States.

According to British media, the research group also tried to undervalue Coca-Cola's role as a donor, and how much money the company gave. Yet millions would have passed through, referring to the results of the study. The brand would have directly funded GEBN to the tune of $ 1.5 million and distributed several million to researchers affiliated with the association.

"The Coca-Cola Company has used public health academics to implement classic tobacco tactics to protect its profits," Gary Ruskin, executive director of Right to Know, said in a statement. "This is a terrible moment in the history of public health and a warning about the dangers of accepting corporate funding for public health work," he adds.

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