The Soda Culture – Impact On The Youth

This includes increased industrialization, increased access to a lot of amenities in our day to day life, be it education, science, computerization or the food industry. With access to a variety of foods in the commercial world (which includes beverages also), our youth is the first category of our population to be influenced by the trend of eating or drinking behavior. One of the most popular items among them is soda consumption. The most benefited by this trend is of course the soda industry. But what about the impact, the plethora of such beverages is causing on the future health of our youth? It is no doubt playing havoc with their lives in terms of the so called lifestyle or the non communicable diseases such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus, cardiac disorders etc. According to a recent survey from the world of medicine, consumption of even one soda (soft drink) per day may be associated with an increase in a negative behavior in young children. The higher the dose of these, greater is the risk of altered behavioral scores ranging from withdrawal behavior to attention deficit disorders. (J Pediatrics, online, Aug, 2013). Studies have demonstrated that even one soda a day is too many for young children, and hence for the very young any soda is not a healthy option.

Not only all of them are contributing to higher than required sugars in the simple form (harmful types), but also suppress normal healthy eating patterns, besides depriving the youngsters of the much needed micro nutrients. Little wonder that an increasing percentage of the youth are being detected with problems of obesity, type 2 diabetes and among adolescent girls the new menace of PCOD (polycystic ovary disease).

Will it be too much to expect some health related regulations vis a vis the food industry to be put in place so that the eating culture of our society is suitably modified, thereby contributing to a healthier adult citizen and also decrease the burden of health care expenditure? I think it would be one small step in the big change.

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