The same 48% of Americans who admit to drinking at least one soda every day also consider themselves overweight, according to a recent poll. The good news is that 52% say they drink no soda, and coffee remains more popular overall.
Gallup surveyed 1,014 adults throughout the country about their daily soda habits. Of the daily drinkers, 28% said they consumed one glass a day and 20% said they drank two or more glasses.
The soda consumers tended to list themselves as overweight. But there really wasn’t a significant weight difference between the moderate and heavier soda drinkers, the researchers found in the study, which was conducted July 9-12. The survey didn’t ask whether the sodas were diet or regular, and since both consumption and weight categories were self-reported, it’s not clear whether drinking even one soda a day is linked to obesity, or if there was some other difference between the two groups.
In a separate survey, Gallup noted that more men are beginning to worry about their weight, even as women are beginning to worry less. While the gap is still substantial – 55% of women to 41% of men, it’s much narrower than it’s ever been.
Young adults, “nonwhites,” and men are also more likely to pick soda over coffee as their choice of beverage, while middle-aged and older Americans tend to favor coffee. The picture of soda drinkers falls in line with what researchers already knew, which is that there are higher rates of obesity among blacks and Hispanics.
Drinking soda at all, much less as a daily habit, contributes to obesity because it is essentially drinking sugar. The sugar contributes to the cycle that triggers an insulin response to high blood sugar levels, and also results in storing the extra calories as fat. Another bad side effect is that you then crave even more sugar. And on the cycle goes.
What can these heavy soda drinkers do to start getting healthier? As we recommended in MyHealingKitchen.com, a first step is to replace a soda, one day at a time, with something like water, tea, or coffee. If you need sweetener, avoid artificial sweeteners and even agave, and use a low-GI stevia-based product like our own SLIMTEVIA ™.