Public Health Department warns against sugary drink consumption through ad campaign to prevent childhood obesity
Santa Clara County, CA. As part of Santa Clara County’s continuing efforts to prevent childhood obesity, the Public Health Department has launched an ad campaign urging parents to protect their kids from sugary drinks, and serve them water instead. Our Kids Are Drowning in Sugar calls attention to the abundance of sugary drinks surrounding children in today’s environment, and the dangerous health consequences, such as obesity, that consuming such drinks can bring.
The bilingual English and Spanish ads will be featured in newspapers as well as on billboards, buses, transit shelters and check cashing facilities in San Jose and Gilroy. The campaign will run through the end of November.
Soda is the number one source of added sugar in the American diet, as it contains large amounts of sugar and very few nutrients. One 20-ounce bottle of soda contains about 17 teaspoons of sugar. The consumption of one 20-ounce soda a day amounts to over 100,000 calories, an extra 28 pounds of weight, a year.
The ad campaign is part of Santa Clara County’s INSPIRE Obesity Prevention initiative, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The goal of this two-year project is to raise awareness in the community about how simple changes in behavior can help reduce risk factors for obesity, and promote healthy food and drink choices.
“Obesity in our community is a public health crisis. Especially for children, it is crucial that parents are aware of the very serious health risks children face by consuming sugary drinks,” said Health Officer Dr. Marty Fenstersheib. “If our community’s children have access to healthy foods and beverages, not only will they be healthy as kids, but they’ll be much more likely to lead long, healthy adult lives. It’s up to all of us to take part in creating a healthy community for everyone.”
California has some of the nation’s fastest growing rates of obesity in children and adolescents. Nearly one in four school-age children in Santa Clara County’s public schools were obese or overweight in 2008, according to a 2007-2008 California Healthy Kids Survey. Obese kids frequently grow up to be obese adults, putting them at increased risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of death.
Download news release