Sugar Sweetened Should be Reduced Sugar Sweetened Should be Reduced
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Reducing Access to Sugar-sweetened Beverages Among Youth
Youth should drink fewer sugar-sweetened beverages and more water and low-fat or fat-free milk, or limited amounts of 100% fruit juices. Families, schools, and other institutions need to provide healthy beverage choices.
Sugar-sweetened beverages are the largest source of added sugars in the diet of U.S. youth.1 Consuming these beverages increases the intake of calories—a factor potentially contributing to obesity among youth nationwide.2
Childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Obesity among children aged 6 to 11 years increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008. Among adolescents aged 12 to 19 years, obesity increased from 5.0% to 18.1%.3,4 In recent decades, consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages among children and adolescents has been increasing.5,6 Boys aged 12–19 years consume an average of 22.0 ounces of full-calorie soda drink per day—more than twice their daily intake of fluid milk (9.8 ounces); girls consume an average of 14.3 ounces of full-calorie soda and 6.3 ounces of fluid milk per day.7
Results from the 2010 National Youth Physical Activity and Nutrition Study (NYPANS)—a school-based survey that collected information on physical activity and dietary behaviors among a nationally representative sample of high school students—underscore the need to reduce consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages. Survey findings, published in a CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) entitled "Beverage Consumption Among High School Students—United States, 2010," show that although water, milk, and 100% fruit juice were the beverages most commonly consumed during the 7 days before the survey, daily consumption of regular soda or pop, sports drinks, and other sugar-sweetened beverages also is prevalent in this population, especially among male and black students. In addition, among high school students, nearly two thirds consumed any combination of these beverages on a daily basis.
What You Can Do
Reduce their consumption of regular soda or pop, sports drinks, and other sugar-sweetened beverages. Increase their consumption of water and low-fat or fat-free milk. Drink limited amounts of 100% fruit juices.
To support youth in making healthy beverage choices, families, schools, and other youth-serving institutions should
Reduce youths’ access to sugar-sweetened beverages to decrease consumption. Encourage adolescents to drink water and low-fat or fat-free milk, or limited amounts of 100% fruit juices, as an option.