ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
Herbal Remedy Could Halt Peanut Allergy
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
U.S. Spends Billions On Alternative Medicine
ANIMAL CARE
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Safe Toys for Dogs
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
BONES & JOINTS
Most Kids With Type 1 Diabetes Lack Vitamin D
Scientists ID New Genes Tied to Crohn's Disease
Rheumatoid Arthritis a Threat to the Heart
CANCER
Smoking Exposure Now Linked to Colon, Breast Cancers
Family History Key Player in Brain Cancer Risk
Green Tea Compound Slowed Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
CAREGIVING
Health Tip: Benefitting From Adult Day Care
TV Watching Doesn't Fast-Track Baby's Skills
Many Alzheimer's Caregivers Admit to Abusive Behavior
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Walk 100 Steps a Minute for 'Moderate' Exercise
High Blood Fat Levels Common in Americans
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
DENTAL, ORAL
Toothbrushing May Stave Off Heart Woes
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
DIABETES
Lifestyle Factors Tied to Older Adults' Diabetes Risk
Whole Grains Take a Bite Out of Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
Milk Destroys Antioxidant Benefits in Blueberries
Purple Tomato Extended Lives of Cancer-Prone Mice
Asparagus May Ease Hangover
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Old-Growth Forests Dying Off in U.S. West
U.S. Diet Needs Heart-Felt Overhaul
Hurricane Threats: Time to Batten Down the Hatches
EYE CARE, VISION
Glaucoma Treatment Can Prevent Blindness
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
Gene-Transfer Proves Safe for Vision Problem
FITNESS
Occupational Therapy Plus Exercise Benefits Osteoarthritis
Daily Exercise at School Yields Rewards
Women Who Run May Benefit From Extra Folic Acid
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Can You Talk Your Way to Happy?
Tune Up Your Health With Music
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Arteries Age Twice as Fast in Smokers
Risk Factor for Stroke More Common Among Whites
Western Diet Linked To Heart Disease, Metabolic Syndrome
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
When It Comes to Toys, Shop Smart, Shop Safe
Dangerous Toys Still on Store Shelves, Report Finds
Combo Treatment Eases Wheezing in Babies
MEN'S HEALTH
The Dark Side of Vegetarianism
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Meaningful Conversations Boost Kids' Language Skills
Love Hormone May Ease Discussion of Painful Topics
Green Spaces Boost the Body and the Mind
PAIN
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
Expectant Mom's Exercise Keeps Newborn's Birth Weight Down
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
SENIORS
Money May Matter, Health-Wise, in Old Age
Older People at Greater Risk of Swine Flu Death
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Supportive Weigh-In Program Keeps Pounds Off
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Add your Article

Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages

By Serena Gordon
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- If you're like many Americans, soda and coffee drinks have become a staple of your daily diet.

But the findings from a new study may make you drop that super-sized, sweetened beverage.

Published in the January issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the research found that people are now drinking almost 50 additional calories of sweetened beverages daily compared to two decades ago, for an average of about 300 calories daily coming from such drinks. So, even if you have the exact same diet as you did 20 years ago and your activity level hasn't changed, those seemingly harmless 50 extra daily calories could cause you to pack on an additional five pounds every year.

"People are taking in enormous amounts of calories in liquid form," said study author Sara Bleich, an assistant professor of health policy and management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "If you're looking for an easy way to lose weight, just stop drinking soda and other sweetened beverages."

Cutting 300 liquid calories from your daily diet translates into about a 2.5 pound weight loss each month.

For the study, Bleich and her colleagues compared data from two national surveys that are part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). One survey covered 1988 to 1994, and the other ran from 1999 to 2004.

The first study included 15,979 adults over age 20, and the second included 13,431 U.S. adults. All completed 24-hour dietary recall information, including whether or not they had consumed a sugar-sweetened beverage. For the study, sugar-sweetened beverages included soda, sport drinks, fruit drinks, punches, low-calorie drinks, sweetened tea and other sweetened drinks.

The percentage of adults who drank sugar-sweetened beverages increased from 58 percent to 63 percent, and the average daily caloric intake from sugar-sweetened drinks increased by 46 calories a day, according to the researchers.

Young adults drank far more calories from sugar-sweetened beverages than did the elderly, with young blacks consuming the highest percentage of sugar-sweetened beverages.

The researchers also found that overweight adults who were trying to lose weight were less likely to drink sugar-sweetened beverages, yet still consumed an average of 278 calories a day during the second study period.

"U.S. adults are consuming a very large amount of sugar-sweetened beverages, and it has increased over time," said Bleich. "I think there are two main drivers to the increase: One is availability. Sugar-sweetened beverages are everywhere. And, two, the container size has increased, so that on any given consumption occasion, people are drinking more."

"Everyone is definitely used to super-sizing," said registered dietician Samantha Heller, host of the satellite radio program, The Samantha Heller Health and Nutrition Show on the NYU Langone Medical Center's Doctor Radio. "If you look at old 8-ounce Coke bottles, they look tiny, but a 20-ounce bottle looks normal."

"One 12-ounce can of soda has about 10 teaspoons of sugar, and most people are drinking more than 12 ounces," she added.

Heller said that she realizes it can be hard to make a change. "When you drink something that tastes good and gives you an energy boost, it's awfully hard to make a connection between those feelings and the fact that those drinks can contribute to overweight, obesity, type 2 diabetes and heart disease."

Still, she advised, "You need to limit your daily intake of sugar-sweetened beverages. To give yourself an incentive, take the money you would've spent on those drinks and put it in a jar, and in a couple of months, buy something fun for yourself or your family."

More information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration offers information on evaluating the calorie content of foods and beverages.



SOURCES: Sara Bleich, Ph.D., assistant professor, health policy and management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore; Samantha Heller, M.S., R.D., host, satellite radio program, The Samantha Heller Health and Nutrition Show on NYU Langone Medical Center's Doctor Radio; January 2009, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Last Updated: Jan. 09, 2009

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