- Drink 1 less sugar based drink a day — with the goal of no longer having it as part of your daily diet.
- Downsize your drink. Ask for a small instead of a large. For example, a super-size soda contains the equivalent of 4 or 5 regular 12 ounce cans, which contains about 48 packets of sugar and has 720 calories.
- Replace one sugary drink with water every week. Substituting water for one 20 ounce sugar-sweetened soda will save you about 240 calories.
- Switch from fruit juice to real fruit. Fruit juice has added sugar.
- Stop drinking energy or sports drinks. Water is all you need to stay hydrated, even when you exercise.
- If you are a parent, don’t buy sugar-sweetened drinks. It is a lot easier to avoid drinking sodas and sugary drinks if they are not in the cabinets at home.
Reducing intake of sugar-sweetened beverages is one of the simplest ways to reduce intake of added sweeteners. And, given the strong association of sugar-sweetened drinks with body weight and obesity, it is also a very simple way to reduce calorie intake and therefore lose weight.
Certainly, it is most optimal to cut out sugar-sweetened drinks entirely. However, just by eliminating one sugared sweetened beverage (SSB) a day, you will be well on your way to better health.
Read the AMA Council on Science and Public Health Report on sugar-sweetened drinks.