Childhood Obesity: Beverage Lobby Hits Back Saying Sugary Drinks Are Not Only Factor

Sep 29, 2012 06:17 PM EDT | By Bradley Brown

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A recent study suggests that an estimate of 12.5 million (17 per cent) of U.S. children are obese; three times as much as thirty years ago, with sugary drinks accounting for an alarming amount of daily calorie consumption. Now the beverage lobby hits back, saying sugary drinks are not he only contributing factor to childhood obesity.

In a statement, the American Beverage Association said: "Obesity is a serious and complex public health issue facing our nation and the rest of the world, and we all must work together to solve it."

It continued: "We know, and science supports, that obesity is not uniquely caused by any single food or beverage.  Thus, studies and opinion pieces that focus solely on sugar-sweetened beverages, or any other single source of calories, do nothing meaningful to help address this serious issue."

But Dr Steven Gortmaker, Director of the Harvard School of Public Health Prevention Research Center, states: "Populations in the U.S. drink tons of sugary sweetened beverages. The average high school student actually drinks more than 300 calories of sugar water every day."

Interesting background information is that sales of sugary dinks for children totaled an estimated $24 billion, according to Scientific America.

Read also: Kids Gain Weight from Soda: Average of 270 Calories a Day from Sugary Drinks, Study Says

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