In a stunning announcement today, the largest soda companies in the United States have agreed to find ways to have consumers drink less soda loaded with sugar. Coke, Pepsi and Dr. Pepper/Snapple have entered into a voluntary agreement with the Clinton Global Initiative to cut beverage calories consumed per person in the US by 20% by 2025. This is a stunning development and it’s an acknowledgement that these beverages contribute to the obesity crisis in this country and around the world.
The approach will be through a variety of tactics, involving marketing, packaging and distribution. Of course, the companies will do this in large part by marketing low-calorie or zero-calorie beverages that they own. The trends away from sugary soft drinks have become more pronounced, though in poorer areas not much has changed. Still, by changing the sizes of soft drinks and encouraging consumption of water and low-calorie drinks, this move can have a huge impact on public health over the years.
So if you have your own bad habit of consuming sugary soft drinks every day, now is the time to stop!
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Are you still drinking soda regularly? If so, look in the mirror and understand the fat you see can be traced back to the amount of sugar and simple carbs you consume, and soda is one of the worst things you can have as part of your regular diet.
If you want to eat healthier, soda is the low-hanging fruit in terms of easy changes you can make. Just try substituting options that don’t have all the sugar. Water is best, but if you need some flavor, try juice mixed with water.
The video below talks about the “war on soda” and the many efforts to get soda out of schools or to eliminate huge soda drinks in places like New York in light of our obesity crisis. Some of you might not like the notion of anyone telling you what to drink, but if you have a brain and care about your long-term health, you should realize that drinking this sugar water is bad for you of you do it regularly. You don’t have to ban it from your life, or the lives of your kids, but use some common sense and stop drinking it on a daily basis.
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Whether or not you’re facing high blood pressure issues, you should considering reducing your sodium intake as you try to improve your eating habits.
When considering your diet and which foods should be emphasized less, it’s not always obvious where you’ll find a lot of sodium. This slideshow of the 7 saltiest foods offer up a good start. For example, one can of soup has a whopping 1,622 mg of sodium! If you’re buying soup at the store, make sure to get the low-sodium version.
Next, 2 slices of pizza has an incredible 1,280 mg of sodium! If pizza is a big part of your diet, you need to reconsider your eating habits. Pizza is also loaded with simple carbs, so start thinking of replacements.
Check out the entire list for more ideas of foods that need to be a smaller part of your diet.
Dr. Robert Lustig has a new book out called “Fat Chance” that addresses the huge problems caused by excessive consumption of sugar, which is a real problem in this country. Watch this video and you’ll realize that you need to be very cognizant of how much sugar you are consuming. This is particularly important if you’re a parent.
The biggest issue involves hidden sugar in processed foods, like salad dressing, hamburger buns, BBQ sauce etc. It’s a labeling issue and an issue about government subsidies for the sugar and corn industries.
This blog is for consumers of health care and medical services. Basically, it’s for everyone. For health issues you should always see a doctor or qualified medical professional - we are not dispensing medical advice. You should, however, be an educated consumer, so we offer information to help you start the process to become educated and to ask important questions. There are many excellent resources on the web, along with all sorts of conflicting opinions and advice. The key is to use a wide variety of resources to learn and access information, so you can ask the important questions when you are with your doctor or health professional.