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Warning Labels on Soda? California’s Newest Crazy Idea

Could you imagine picking up your favorite beverage and seeing an alarming warning label akin to those found on cigarettes? That’s what one Californian politician has just introduced in the legislature, S.B. 1000. State Senator Bill Monning (D-Carmel) has proposed labeling soda cans with warnings that claim the beverages contribute to “obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay.”

Let’s take a look more carefully at the numerous “health concerns” that would be cited on the warning label”

First, obesity. Obesity is a serious epidemic plaguing millions of Americans. The condition of obesity has multiple risk factors, including genetics, age, stress, and even lack of sleep. To place the burden onto one product is not only counterproductive, but wholly irresponsible.

As well, the claim linking diabetes to soda is remarkably fragile. According to the American Diabetes Association, Type 2 diabetes is caused by genetics and lifestyle factors, not soda.  In addition, while being overweight increases risk, a diet high in calories from either sugar or fat, can contribute. However, regular exercise and moderation are key to combat the risk of diabetes.

While these health conditions are serious, the bill proposed by Senator Monning is an extremely sensationalist proposal, and the lack of credible science behind his bill is troubling.

Obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay are medical issues that need thoughtful and legitimate consideration and study if we are going to tackle them. Senator Monning’s will only feed the alarmist hype surrounding soft drinks and further scare consumers without changing their habits. 

(Photo credit to Kevin Wong)


Tags: CA
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