Americans consume too much added sugars, study says, and it’s killing us

Feb. 3, 2014, Los Angeles Times

By Karen Kaplan

Americans consume too much sugar, and our collective sweet tooth is killing us.

So says a study published Feb. 3 by the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. It finds that 71.4 percent of U.S. adults get more than the recommended 10 percent of their daily calories from added sugars in foods and drinks — and that higher levels of sugar consumption are correlated with higher risk of death due to cardiovascular disease (CVD).

“Too much sugar does not just make us fat; it can also make us sick,” Laura A. Schmidt, a professor of health policy at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, wrote in a commentary that accompanies the study. Continue reading

Mexico, with world’s top obesity rate, raises prices on soft drinks to fight it

Sept. 23, 2013, International Business Times

By Patricia Rey Mallén

It is a well-known fact that the United States is the country in the world with the largest obesity rate. But it isn’t anymore. A report by the United Nations revealed that the United States came in second to its southern neighbor, Mexico. The new data, published in July 2013, shows that 32.8 percent of Mexicans are overweight — a full percentage point over the number of Americans.

President Enrique Peña Nieto, whose administration has been going through an intense few months of political reforms, has begun taking measures to fight the trend. The first, taking a page from New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, has attacked sugary drinks, which have been blamed for the burgeoning rate of overweight citizens. Continue reading

Sugary drinks tied to obesity among preschoolers

Aug. 5, 2013, Reuters

By Genevra Pittman

Five-year-olds who drink sugar-sweetened sodas, sports drinks, or juices every day are more likely to be obese than those who have sugar-sweetened beverages less often, according to a new study.

Although the link between sugary drinks and extra weight has been well documented among teens and adults, researchers said that up until now, the evidence was less clear for young children.

“Even though sugar-sweetened beverages are relatively a small percentage of the calories that children take in, that additional amount of calories did contribute to more weight gain over time,” said Dr. Mark DeBoer, who led the study at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Continue reading

Sugar is sugar: Fruit juice just as bad as soda for kids

May 31, 2013, Everyday Health

By Amir Khan

Doctors and public health officials have long called for parents to eschew soda, but what you replace it with is just as important. While kids are drinking less soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages, many minority kids are switching to 100 percent fruit juice – which can be just as bad for you as soda according to a new study published yesterday in the journal Academic Pediatrics.

But while African-American and Latino children have increased their consumption of 100 percent juice, the same isn’t seen in Caucasian children, according to the study. Continue reading

Sugary drink consumption down among U.S. kids

May 29, 2013, Chicago Tribune

By Kathryn Doyle

More evidence that Americans are heeding calls to cut back on sugary drinks appears in a report from researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In 2010, U.S. children got an average of 68 fewer calories per day from sugary drinks than in 2000, according to the analysis in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Both children and adults are drinking less sugar at meals and at snack time, the study also found.

The results are consistent with previous studies showing a decline in consumption of sugar generally, and soda specifically, between 1999 and 2008, said lead author Dr. Brian Kit of CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics in Rockville, Md. Continue reading

One sugar-sweetened soda a day boosts diabetes risk

April 25, 2013, TIME

By Alexandra Sifferlin

All it takes is one can of soda to increase risk of type 2 diabetes by 22 percent, according to a new study.

In the study published in Diabetologia, researchers studied diet and drinking habits of about 28,500 people from Britain, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Spain, Sweden, France, Italy, and the Netherlands over a period of 15 years.

Those who consumed a 12-ounce serving of a sugared-beverage on average daily — about the size of a soda can — had a greater risk of developing diabetes compared to people who drank a can once a month or less. Continue reading

New federal rules aim to make school snacks more healthful, limit junk food sales on campus

Feb. 02, 2013, The Washington Post

Goodbye candy bars and sugary cookies. Hello baked chips and diet sodas.

The government for the first time is proposing broad new standards to make sure all foods sold in schools are more healthful, a change that would ban the sale of almost all candy, high-calorie sports drinks, and greasy foods on campus.

Under new rules the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) proposed Feb. 2, school vending machines would start selling water, lower-calorie sports drinks, diet sodas, and baked chips instead. Lunchrooms that now sell fatty “a la carte” items like mozzarella sticks and nachos would have to switch to healthier pizzas, low-fat hamburgers, fruit cups, and yogurt. Continue reading