Health District kicks off its 3rd Soda Free Summer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

8 June, 2015

LAS VEGAS – Nevadans consume more soda than people in 18 states. Some soda facts to consider:

  • There are 10 teaspoons of sugar in a 12-oz bottle of soda.
  • Soda and sugary drinks contribute to tooth decay in infants.
  • Teens drink twice as much soda as milk.
  • Americans consume approximately 42 gallons of sweetened drinks annually.

The Southern Nevada Health District kicks off its 3rd annual Soda Free Summer Challenge today to encourage children and adults to choose water or other healthier beverages and reduce or eliminate sugary drinks. Participants can use the Soda Free Summer Challenge tracker tools on the Get Healthy Clark County website http://gethealthyclarkcounty.org/spotlights/soda-free-summer.php

Sugar sweetened beverages – any beverage that has a caloric sweetener added to it – are the single largest source of added sugars in the American diet. The average American consumes nearly 42 gallons of sweetened beverages a year – the equivalent of 39 pounds of extra sugar. A 20-ounce bottle of soda contains the equivalent of approximately 16 teaspoons of sugar. The American Heart Association recommends that Americans consume no more than six to nine teaspoons of added sugar per day.

In Nevada, 36.3 percent of adults drink at least one soda or fruit drink per day; the national average is 26.3 percent, according to the 2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). Nevadans between the ages of 18 and 34 consume more sugary fruit drinks than their counterparts in all states except Mississippi as well as the highest rates among non-Hispanic and Hispanic adults in the same age range:

  • 30.2 percent of black/non-Hispanic adults consumed at least one soda per day; the national average is 20.9 percent
  • 32.2 percent of Hispanic adults consumed at least one soda per day; the national average is 22.6 percent

Adults and children can reduce their risk of obesity and obesity-related illnesses, diabetes, tooth decay and even gout by making healthier beverage choices such as water, fat-free or 1 percent milk, seltzer or unsweetened tea or coffee. Cutting out one can of soda per day can reduce caloric intake by about 150 calories and 10 teaspoons of sugar. Healthier drink choices include water, fat-free or 1 percent milk, seltzer or unsweetened tea or coffee.

In the past 40 years, portion sizes and consumption of sugary beverages have increased. Research has found a link between the consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks and higher rates of obesity, oral health problems and overall poor diets. More recently, sugary beverages have been linked to heart disease according to a study by the University of California, Davis. In addition, about 50 percent of the U.S. population drinks at least one sugary beverage a day and a quarter of them have more than one. Soda, sweetened fruit drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks account for nearly half of all added sugar consumption in the American diet.

 

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Access information about the Southern Nevada Health District on its website: www.SNHD.info. Follow the Health District on Facebook: www.facebook.com/SouthernNevadaHealthDistrict, YouTube: www.youtube.com/SNHealthDistrict, Twitter: www.twitter.com/SNHDinfo, and Instagram: www.instagram.com/southernnevadahealthdistrict/. The Health District is available in Spanish on Twitter: www.twitter.com/TuSNHD.  Additional information and data can be accessed through the Healthy Southern Nevada website: www.HealthySouthernNevada.org.