As a mother of two little girls already (and a third baby on the way as well!) I sometimes feel like my high school and college days were a lifetime ago—and then again sometimes I still wake up panicked that I failed my Trigonometry final exam! But with my little girls now going to school I do sometimes worry about making sure that they will continue to get the right nutrition after it isn’t ‘cool’ anymore for me to help pack their lunches.
Back when I was in high school there weren’t the same options for low calorie snacks that there are today, and for many kids having a soda a day was more of a status symbol than anything else (I missed the energy drink craze that came after, but I’ve heard horror stories that are even worse than anything Mt. Dew or Coke can cause).
I don’t want Sunny & Sadie to get caught up with this habit, especially after studies which show that having a soft drink a day does more than just add 150 calories of wasted sugar and carbonation to your diet. This study, released by the Journal Diabetes Care, found that people of any age who had the habit of drinking one or two sugar-sweetened beverages (anything from sodas and energy drinks to sweetened teas and vitamin water) were more than 25 percent likelier to develop type 2 diabetes than those who had no more than one sugary drink per month.
A 25% increase just from having a soda once a day? I remember many students sucking down fountain drinks at every meal and not thinking a thing of it. It is such an easy little thing to add into every day but the consequences of diabetes aren’t. I don’t want my children to go through this and I want to make sure, especially as they are growing, that they get the best nutrition possible and that they understand the importance of eating right to their energy level and growth, so that even when they are on their own they can chose to eat healthfully.