Five ‘Real Things’ Coca-Cola Can Do To Address Obesity

Boy drinkingCoca-Cola has unveiled a new ad campaign they say is designed to be part of the conversation about obesity. First up: an ad that touts their 180 beverages that are no or low calorie, like Dasani water and diet sodas.

If this means Coke plans to focus on these drinks and dedicate their advertising dollars (U.S. and globally) towards promoting water, unsweetened tea and other zero calorie drinks, that could be a helpful step toward reducing obesity and preventing many cases of cancer in the United States. Continue reading

Sugary Sodas, Weight and Cancer Prevention

Two new studies strengthen the link between sugary drinks leading to weight gain and obesity. The research adds powerful new evidence to AICR’s recommendation that people should avoid drinking sugary beverages to reduce cancer risk because what we weigh is important. Obesity links to increased risk of seven types of cancers.

The studies were released on Friday in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The new studies provide a strong case for the direct effect of sugary sodas on weight gain, regardless of diet and exercise. The studies were relatively long and experimental: In contrast, the vast majority of long-term studies on sugary beverages  — and diet in general – are observational, meaning that researchers look at any link between what participants drink and their weight.

These experimental studies both focused on how sugary beverages affect the weight of children and adolescents.

The first study took place over two-years and included 224 overweight and obese adolescents who drank almost two sugary beverages a day. About half of the teens were asked to drink water, diet sodas, or other calorie-free beverages instead of their normal sugary drink. The other half continued to drink their sugary beverages as normal. Continue reading

Drinking 200 Sweet Calories per Day

Almost half of Americans drink sugar-sweetened drinks daily, with men consuming close to 200 calories per day from sugary drinks, finds a government report released today.

The survey was conducted by researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – you can see the report here. Overall, the report found that men take in an average of 175 calories from sugar drinks on any given day, while women take in 94 calories. (A 12-ounce can of soda has 140 calories.)

Here are some of the report’s key highlights:

  • About one-half of Americans consume sugary drinks on any given day
  • About 25 percent consume less than 200 calories from sugary drinks daily; 5 percent take in at least 567 calories
  • Blacks and Mexican Americans both consume more sugary drinks than whites

In this new CDC survey, sugar-sweetened drinks include fruit drinks (not 100% fruit juice), sodas, energy drinks, sports drinks, and sweetened bottled waters. Researchers pulled data from a large national health survey abbreviated NHANES.

For cancer prevention, AICR recommends people avoid sugary drinks. AICR’s expert report and its updates concluded that regularly consuming sugary drinks leads to weight gain, and extra body fat is linked to increased risk of seven different cancers.

Many health organizations, such as the American Heart Association, have recommended Americans reduce their sugar intake. And sugary drinks is one place to start. But for many sugary-soda lovers, it can be a hard habit to break. If anyone has weaned themselves off sugar-sweetened drinks, please share how.