America’s Love Affair With Sugary Sodas Is Fading

America’s Love Affair With Sugary Sodas Is Fading

Consumption of sodas and other sweet drinks — a big source of sugar in Americans’ diets — has dropped in the past decade among both kids and adults, researchers find.

Overall, the number of adults who said they drank a sugary beverage on a daily basis dropped by 12 percentage points between 2003 and 2014, Harvard researchers said, and by 19 percentage points among kids.

“People’s preferences are shifting,” Bleich said. “Beverage consumption overall is going down, in addition to sugary beverage consumption. It may be that messages about beverages are starting to get through to people.”

However, despite this drop in sugary drink consumption, the obesity epidemic continues apace, with more obese middle-aged people, young adults and children than ever before, Bleich noted.

Americans are still consuming too many calories. “Even if beverages overall are going down, we are eating too much. And it’s because we are eating too much that obesity continues to rise,” she said.

The report was published online Nov. 14 in the journal Obesity.

Samantha Heller is a senior clinical nutritionist at New York University Medical Center. She said, “The good news is the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages has declined in the U.S. The bad news is we still have more work to do because sugar-sweetened beverages are the largest contributor to added sugars in the U.S. and are highly associated with obesity.”

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