Rethink your sugary drink !
As the name suggests the campaign is designed to raise awareness on the impacts that sugary drinks have on our bodies and of course our teeth!
A recent study shows that a Mega Slurp Slurpee contains a whopping 25 teaspoons of sugar. I know what you’re thinking. “I would never eat 25 teaspoons of sugar” but you would drink it without even noticing it! The campaign itself takes the drinks you would normally consume without thought or awareness of the sugar content and tests how much sugar is actually it.
To the left is a diagram of what sugary drinks are doing to your body. Energy and fizzy drinks contain sugar and acids, these acids erode the teeth and leave the exposed enamel or Dentine which then leads to decay. Even if you brush your teeth immediately after consuming one of these drinks the teeth have already been exposed to enough of the acid to cause damage.
While these drinks lead to decay you can also see from the diagram that they have a major impact on various other parts and organs of the body and can eventually lead to weight gain and Diabetes.
The campaign “time to rethink sugary drink” contains important and useful information on how much sugar we consume and what products contain the most of it.
Did you know?
“Soft drink” refers to any beverage with added sugar or other sweetener, and includes but is not limited to soda, fruit punch, sports and energy drinks.
Sugar sweetened beverages are high in kilojoules, leading to weight gain and obesity.
Obesity is a leading risk factor for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers.
Research has shown that consuming 340ml of sugary drinks a day (which equates to less than one can) increases your risk of type 2 diabetes by 22% when compared to drinking one can a month or less.
American estimates show that consuming one can of soft drink per day could lead to a 6.75kg weight gain in one year.
Young Australians are very high consumers of sugar sweetened beverages, and sugar sweetened soft drinks in particular. The 2007 Australian National Children’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey found that 47% of children (2 to 16 years of age) consumed sugar sweetened beverages (including energy drinks) every day.
In the 12 months to October 2012, Australians bought 1.28 billion litres of carbonated/still drinks with sugar, with regular cola drinks being the most popular (447 million litres).
Many drinks contain acid that harm your teeth, including regular and diet soft drinks, sports/energy drinks and fruit juices. Acid weakens tooth enamel which can lead to tooth decay. Tooth decay is the most prevalent disease in Australia.
Sugar sweetened beverages produce more acid when the sugar combines with bacteria in the mouth. Try drinking water instead – it has no acid, no sugar, no kilojoules and if you get it from the tap it’s free.
Energy and sweetened powder drinks
What are energy drinks?
Energy drinks are beverages that contain varying amounts of caffeine, taurine, guarana, amino acids, vitamins and sugar. Energy drinks are promoted as being beneficial in increasing stamina, and improving physical performance, endurance and concentration.
What are the ingredients of energy drinks? Energy drinks typically contain a mixture of:
Caffeine is a stimulant that acts on the central nervous system to speed up the messages to and from the brain. Caffeine is the main active ingredient in energy drinks.
Guarana is an extract from a plant that contains about twice the amount of caffeine as coffee beans.
Theobromine comes from the cacao plant. It has a similar effect to caffeine and is found in chocolate and many other foods.
Taurine which occurs naturally in food, especially in seafood and meat, and is necessary for normal skeletal muscle functioning.
Ginseng is a substance that comes from a variety of plants and is believed to have medicinal properties, but has been found to interact with a number of prescription and herbal drugs.
Caffeine content of some popular energy drinks and soft drinks
Mother energy drink 500 ml can 160 mg
Red Bull 250 ml can 80 mg
V energy drink 250 ml can 50 mg
Cola soft drink 375 ml can 40–50 mg
Diet cola soft drink 375ml can 48 mg
• Feeling more alert and active
• Needing to urinate more frequently
• Rise in body temperature
• Stimulation of the brain and nervous system.
Serious injury from caffeine overdose can occur. The Australian Medical Journal has reported an increase in energy drink related reports to the Poisons Information Service in NSW, and they assume that this increase would be reflected in national statistics.
Some of the adverse health effects associated with excessive energy drink consumption includes:
• rapid heart rate
For more information visit http://www.rethinksugarydrink.org.au/go-free
The website listed above contains all the useful information regarding the campaign. It informs readers of how much we are consuming and how much we should be consuming. It includes tips on how to cut back on the amount we consume and how schools can remove sugary foods from their menus and how parents can avoid sugary products for their children and promote healthier choices.
There is also a drinks calculator which allows you to put in the required details and notifies you on how much exercise you would need to participate in to burn off the calories you just consumed. Below is one that we entered for one bottle of Vitamin water. You would need to walk over two kilometres to burn off the kilojoules.