‘Proven’ ways to cut sugary drinks

Public health research network Cochrane reviewed 58 studies of initiatives aimed at helping people drink fewer sugar-sweetened beverages, to improve their health. The studies lasted about a year and involved more than one million adults, children and teenagers, in schools, restaurants or shops.

Cochrane’s other recommendations include improving the availability of low-calorie beverages at home, such as through home deliveries of bottled water and diet drinks.

Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: “More than a year since the soft drinks industry levy was introduced, manufacturers have cut the amount of sugar in their products, while hundreds of millions of pounds have been raised in revenue to promote healthy eating in schools and tackle child obesity.

“However, as this report demonstrates, more can and should be done by the soft drinks industry to improve customer choice, such as better labelling and providing healthier alternatives.

“Some energy and sports drinks have up to 17 teaspoons of sugar in a 500 ml bottle – more than twice the daily allowance for adults. What is needed is a universal adoption of a labelling system which provides an instant ‘at-a-glance’ understanding of sugar content.

“Raising awareness of the amount of sugar in food and drink, while giving families a more informed choice, is crucial if we are to make a vital breakthrough in the fight against tooth decay and obesity.”

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