It is well-known that our consumption of sugary drinks is too high, but there is hope that sugar warning labels could make us buy fewer sodas.
- Warning labels on sugary drinks are likely to make consumers think twice about buying the beverage
- Obesity and diabetes among children are very common
- The labels could educate consumers on health issues
In the U.S. the most spread diseases are obesity and diabetes. What is even more concerning is that they are very common among children. The main reason behind this is a poor nutrition. Many kids consume fast-food and drink sodas which contain too much sugar.
In Mexico, the authorities have imposed some taxes on sugary drinks which seem to work as consumption has decreased. Therefore, it looks like taxes and regulations imposed by the government could work in the U.S. as well.
The problem is not necessarily that we drink sugary beverages, but the problem is that we don’t really have a limit to it and we drink too much, ingesting too much sugar which has a negative impact on our bodies and organisms.
Another reason why warning labels are seen as a good solution for the problem is that they have worked so far for alcohol and tobacco. Of course, the statistics are still not exactly positive when it comes to tobacco and alcohol consumption, but it might work for sugar.
A research was done to find out what impact could a warning label on sugary drinks have on consumers. The study contained an online survey with about 2,400 participants. All participants were parents coming from different backgrounds.
They were asked to imagine a vending machine from which to choose a drink for their child. They had six products to choose from. One beverage had no label, one had a calorie label and the other four had warning labels differently written. The criteria was drawn from the California legislation which states that any nonalcoholic drink with added sweeteners that has more than 75 calories per 12 ounces should have a warning label.
In the study, only 40 percent of the participants chose a beverage with a warning label, while 60 percent chose the beverage with no label. This shows that the calorie label doesn’t have a real impact and that a warning label could be a lot more effective.
The labels can both educate consumers about the harm a sugary drink can bring to their health as well as influence their decision in purchasing the drink.
Although, it is not yet sure when we will be seeing warning labels on sugary beverages, it is clear that when it happens less people will buy sweetened drinks, especially if they’re planning to give them to their children.
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