Think a “sugar tax” in Canada is a bad idea? A new study might change your mind.

Researchers at Waterloo University say that if Canada implemented a 20% tax on sugary drinks it would save 13,000 lives. WOW.

Not only that, but the sugar tax could prevent up to 200 cases of type 2 diabetes, prevent upwards of 600,000 cases of obesity and more than 20,000 cases of cancer in Canada alone.

In turn, the tax would reduce some of the pressure on Canada’s healthcare system, saving as much as $12-billion in healthcare costs over the next 25 years.

The tax wouldn’t be implemented for customers. Instead, the manufactures of sweet drinks would have to pay instead. This would inflate the price of sugary drinks at the grocery store, much like what has been done with tobacco and alcohol.

In turn, more than $43.6-billion would be raised in government revenue over 25 years.

Right now, more than two-thirds of Canadians are considered overweight. The current recommendation from the World Health Organization for a women’s daily sugar consumption is 25 grams a day, which is less than half a can of coke.

A similar “sugar tax” on sweet drinks has been introduced in Berekely, California, and sales of soft drinks have already fallen by 10%. Read more about it here.