News From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Adults eventually may lose their childhood taste for ultrasweet treats, but soda and other sugar-laced beverages often remain a diet mainstay. In fact, more than 30% of US adults said in a recent survey that they drink at least 1 regular soda or other sugary beverage every day, despite excessive sugar’s contribution to type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease.
Researchers at the CDC analyzed data gathered in 2013 by state health departments in 23 states and the District of Columbia to identify the sociodemographic characteristics and geographic locations of adults who drink the most sugary beverages, including regular soda, sweet tea, fruit drinks, and sports or energy drinks (Park S et al. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2016;65:169-174).
People who drank at least 1 sugary drink daily tended to be younger: 43.3% were 18 to 24 years old. Men, black adults, unemployed people, and those with less than a high school education also were frequent sugary beverage drinkers. Those least likely to indulge were adults aged 55 years or older, retired people, and college graduates.
Nearly half of people in Mississippi drank sugary beverages at least once a day, more than in any other state. Louisiana and West Virginia, where about 45% of adults had a daily sugar-sweetened drink, followed close behind. Vermont ranked last, with only 18% of adults having a daily sugary drink.
Health care professionals can help their patients by counseling them to cut back on sugary drinks and by advocating for beverage changes in their clinics and hospitals, the authors wrote.