Nourishing Knowledge Blog Post Four: Sugary Drinks
WATCH the Video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6tVnQiB7Pw
There is nothing sweet about sugary drinks.
Sugary drinks include soft drinks, fruit juice, cordial, sports drinks and energy drinks. All the drinks in this group should be strictly limited or avoided. Research has shown that consuming one can of sugary drink a day can lead to 6.75kg weight gain in one year, increasing the risk of obesity and weight-related health concerns.
Soft drinks are very high in sugar and kilojoules, and provide no nutritional value other than fluid. A 600ml bottle of regular soft drink has around 16 teaspoons of sugar in it, containing over 1000 kilojoules and is equivalent to:
- 1 cup of ice-cream or
- almost 3 Tim Tams
Note: Diet soft drinks should be limited or avoided also as they have no nutritional value other than fluid and have an erosive effect on your teeth.
Fruit juice (100% juice) can be part of a healthy diet if you have small quantities of it (no more than half a cup) as it's high in sugar. A 250 ml glass of orange juice has almost 6 teaspoons of sugar and although it does contain some vitamins, it's better to drink water and eat a whole piece of fruit as it has more vitamins and fibre and will be more filling.
Cordial and sports drinks are high in kilojoules and energy drinks are also high in caffeine. All these drinks should be limited or avoided. Don’t be fooled by sports drinks, you only need to replace lost electrolytes after a workout of 90 minutes or more and there are sugar free options.
Consuming sugary drinks on a daily basis can do serious damage to vital organs over the long term. The excess sugar in these drinks can turn to toxic fat and increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers. Refer to this infographic for a summary of the health impacts of sugary drinks http://www.rethinksugarydrink.org.au/downloads/what-are-sugary-drinks-doing-to-your-body.pdf.
Plain tap water is the best drink choice. It's cheap, quenches your thirst and has no kilojoules. Buy a drink bottle so you can take your own water everywhere you go. Keep water in a jug in the fridge so you can have chilled water to drink whenever you're thirsty. For some added flavor, add a slice of lemon, orange or cucumber.
Nutrition in the News
Push for sugar tax on drinks
A 20 per cent sugar tax on soft drinks would raise more than $400 million a year and save thousands of Australian lives over the coming decades, a new report has found.
The proposed slug on sugar sweetened drinks would prevent more than 1600 deaths from weight-related diseases over the next 25 years alone, according to research by the Obesity Policy Coalition.
With an estimated 16,000 fewer cases of type 2 diabetes, 4400 fewer cases of heart disease and 1100 fewer Australians suffering strokes likely if consumption is cut due to a sugar tax, OPC executive manager Jane Martin said the proposal must be considered.
The Age, 14/4/2016, page 13
- Cancer Council Victoria 2015, Graphic new TV ad highlights health risks of sugary drinks, http://www.cancervic.org.au/about/media-releases/2015-media-releases/october-2015/graphic-ad-health-risks-sugary-drinks.html, viewed April 2016
- Live Lighter 2016, Avoid Sugar Drinks, https://livelighter.com.au/Top-Tips/Avoid-Sugary-Drinks, viewed April 2016
- Rethink Sugary Drink 2016. FAQs, http://www.rethinksugarydrink.org.au/, viewed April 2016