232337 Soft drink consumption and its link to obesity and other health effects

Monday, November 8, 2010 : 2:30 PM - 2:50 PM

Susan H. Babey, PhD , UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA
There has been a substantial increase in the consumption of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages since the 1970's. During this same time frame, there have been corresponding increases in caloric intake and the prevalence of obesity. Research increasingly suggests that consumption of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages may be an important contributor to the obesity epidemic. In addition to links with obesity, soft drink consumption has been associated with a number of other poor health outcomes. These include increased risk of coronary heart disease, hypertension, insulin resistance, and diabetes. Research also suggests that there are considerable disparities in soft drink consumption. Specifically, higher consumption rates are found among low-income populations and people of color. These sub-populations are the same groups that tend to be at increased for obesity and diabetes. This presentation will illustrate several of these health effects as well as disparities in soda consumption using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, the California Health Interview Survey and other sources. The existing research suggests a number of potential benefits from reducing soft drink consumption including reduced risk of obesity, improved dietary intake and reduced risk of diabetes. These findings support policy efforts to limit or discourage consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe the health impacts of soft drink consumption. Discuss the relationship between soft drink consumption and obesity. Identify policy options for modifying the beverage environment.

Keywords: Food and Nutrition, Obesity

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a senior research scientist at the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and has a research appointment in the UCLA School of Public Health, Department of Health Services. My research focuses on the social and environmental factors related to physical activity, dietary behavior, overweight and obesity, and chronic health conditions such as asthma and diabetes.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.