0 Sugar-Sweetened Drinks
Sugar-sweetened drinks goal
Aim for the whole family to drink zero sugar-sweetened drinks every day. If you want better overall health, more energy, stronger bones, healthy weight, and less tooth decay, limit your intake of sugary soda pop, sports drinks and fruit drinks with artificial ingredients. Be kind to your body - drink more water and low-fat milk instead.
Did you know?
- Soft drinks contain harmful additives with no nutritional value. If you read labels, you know soft drinks also contain alarming amounts of sugar. Drink just nine ounces of soft drinks, and you'll consume up to 12 teaspoons of sugar - more than 100 percent of the recommended daily allowance - and 150 empty calories. Too much sugar triggers rapid rises in blood sugar, forcing the pancreas to secrete insulin.
- Studies link the over-consumption of soft drinks to heart disease, obesity, diabetes and osteoporosis.
- Phosphoric acid is added to many soft drinks to prevent it from going flat. But did you know phosphoric acid interferes with the body's ability to use calcium and eats away at tooth enamel? The result: softening bones and teeth, increasing the risk of fractures and tooth decay. Phosphoric acid also neutralizes the hydrochloric acid in your stomach, inhibiting digestion.
- Soft drinks and energy drinks often contain caffeine, which kids don't need.
The good news
- The most cost-efficient option is the healthiest one: water. In warm weather and following work-outs and athletic exertion, water cools the body quicker than any sugar-laden drink.
- Fill a pitcher with water and keep it in the fridge. If you have tap water and can remove its chlorine with a filter, so much the better. For zest, taste, and natural flavor, add a colorful wedge of fresh lemon, lime or orange. Chopped ice and a straw make it a delight.
- Green tea offers significant protection against heart disease and cancer because it contains antioxidants. Green tea is a healthy pick-me-up as it also contains an amino acid that produces a state of relaxed alertness.
- Score double points by making fresh-squeezed juices and fruit-based smoothies, tropical shakes and dessert drinks as a family. Not only will you be offering a fun alternative to television and video games, you'll be teaching healthy habits and providing a tasty treat.