A new study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics shows that the sugary drink problem in the U.S. is becoming an even worse problem, despite efforts to curb their consumption.
Dana Hunnes, senior dietitian at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and adjunct assistant professor at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, is available to provide commentary on the problem as well as potential solutions.
See some of her initial commentary here:
Hunnes on the new CDC data and the problem with sugary drinks:
“Sugary beverages are among the worst things we can consume. Their impact on our health is stark. They are not only empty calories, but they also provide no beneficial nutrient intake whatsoever. Our bodies don't recognize them as satiating in the way that food is satiating, so they can cause us to consume many more calories. Sugary drinks are cause for concern with regard to diabetes and they're a big contributor to the obesity epidemic.
“People want to be healthier. It’s important to them. But if you compare the soaring costs of healthier foods with the cheap price of sodas and other less healthy products, it’s difficult to make healthier choices.”
Hunnes on potential solutions:
“We know that education has mostly failed. Educating people to drink fewer sugar-sweetened beverages only works to a point. After that, taxing drinks with added sugar — along with putting those taxes toward public health programs — would help far more. Sometimes it takes an unpopular decision to better people’s health.”