Consumer Advocates Urge FDA to Set Sugar Limits for Soda

Consumer Advocates Urge FDA to Set Sugar Limits for Soda
Consumer Advocates Urge FDA to Set Sugar Limits for Soda

(HealthDay News) – Consumer advocates and nutrition experts, led by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), are petitioning the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to determine what levels of high-fructose corn syrup and other sweeteners in sodas and soft drinks are indeed safe.

Researchers from CSPI noted in a press release that, while the American Heart Association recommends men consume no more than nine teaspoons and women no more than six teaspoons of added sugars per day, a single 20-ounce bottle of soda contains roughly 16 teaspoons of high-fructose corn syrup-derived sugar. Their petition stated that such added calories now make up more than one-third of the daily caloric intake of about 14 million Americans.

CSPI is asking the FDA to (1) determine first what level of sweeteners in drinks is safe; (2) set targets for sugar content in other sweet foods; and (3) educate consumers on healthy food and beverage choices.

"As currently formulated, Coke, Pepsi, and other sugar-based drinks are unsafe for regular human consumption. Like a slow-acting but ruthlessly efficient bioweapon, sugar drinks cause obesity, diabetes, and heart disease," Michael F. Jacobson, PhD, CSPI executive director, said in a statement. "The FDA should require the beverage industry to re-engineer their sugary products over several years, making them safer for people to consume, and less conducive to disease."

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