Soft drink intake linked to weight issues

International researchers are again urging people to reduce their soft drink intake, with the reduction in consumption being important for lowering overweight and obesity, particularly in teens.

The researchers suggest that taxing soft drinks may help to achieve reduced soft drink consumption.

In this study, which was published in JAMA Network Open, the research team looked at data from 405,528 school-going teens from 107 countries and regions and found that for every 10% increase in the prevalence of daily soft drink consumption, there was a 3.7% increase in the prevalence of overweight and obesity.

The team also found that high-income countries were more likely to implement soft drink taxes than low- and middle-income countries, and in countries with soft drink taxes, soft drink consumption was lower among school-going teens (30.2% vs 33.5% in countries with no tax).

The researchers concluded: “In this study of 107 countries and regions, the prevalence of daily consumption of soft drinks was associated with the prevalence of overweight and obesity among adolescent students. Our results, in conjunction with other evidence, suggest that reducing soft drink consumption should be a priority in combating adolescent overweight and obesity.”

According to the researchers, “these findings suggest that reducing soft drink consumption is important for lowering overweight and obesity in adolescents, and action should be used to reduce the consumption of soft drinks”.

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