Sugary-Sweetened Beverages

Adopted in November 2018 – Health and Community Concerns Commission

Sugary-sweetened beverages are the single largest source of added sugar in the American diet. Sugary drinks, which include sodas, sports drinks, soft drinks, and fruit punches have become a part of a regular diet for millions of people.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) more than sixty percent of teenagers are drinking at least one sugary drink daily. Drinking two or more sugary drinks per day results in being four times more susceptible to having high levels of triglycerides. Many people drink more than three of these drinks a day which may lead to very unhealthy results.

Drinking large amounts of sugary beverages can lead to serious health problems.

  • Sugary beverages are significantly associated with weight gain and obesity.
  • A child’s risk of becoming obese increases by 60% with each additional sugary beverage consumed daily.
  • Sugary beverages increase the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and gout.
  • For children, drinking sugary beverages almost doubles the risk of dental cavities.
  • Just one 20-ounce bottle of a sugary beverage per day can result in gaining 25 extra pounds per year.
  • The health costs of obesity in the United States are over $100 billion annually.

Studies from the American Public Health Association provide clear and consistent evidence that people do not compensate for the added calories they consume in soft drinks by reducing their intake of other foods. Beverage companies spend a lot of money making their products into household names.

  • Youth consumption of carbonated beverages increases by almost 10% with every 100 additional television ads viewed.
  • The beverage industry disproportionately targets its marketing of sugary drinks at youth, low-income people, and people of color.
  • African-American children and teens saw more than twice as many television ads for sugar drinks than did their white peers.
  • Hispanic Americans are 20% more likely to be obese than white Americans and 50 percent more likely to die from diabetes.

The California State PTA encourages parents to:

  • Ask restaurants to take soda off of kids’ menus, making water or milk the default drink.
  • Support sugary drink warning labels.

The California State PTA supports legislation to reduce the use of sugary drinks. Reasonable soda taxes have been proven effective in dramatically reducing consumption of sugary drinks, leading to improving public health especially among children.

The California State PTA urges parents to advocate that cities, states, and Congress legislate to reduce consumption of sugar sweetened beverages.

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