Limit Sugary Drinks in your Diet

Limit Sugary Drinks

Sugar-sweetened beverages are the number one source of added sugars in a typical diet of those in the United States.1 Sugary drinks refer to any beverage with added sugar or other sweeteners, including fruit juice concentrates.

Imagine scooping 7 to 10 teaspoons full of sugar into your 12-ounce glass of water. This is how much is in a typical can of soda. Although 100% fruit juices contain nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals, it should also be limited as it contains sugar and calories.2 The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends people over the age of 3 eat no more than 12.5 teaspoons (50 grams) of added sugar a day, or less than 10 percent of total calories per day.4

Sugary drinks often contain many calories with limited other nutrients. Drinking one sugary drink every day, and not cutting back on calories elsewhere, means you could gain up to 5 pounds a year. Beyond weight gain, routinely drinking sugary beverages can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, other chronic diseases, and even increase your risk of premature death.3

Your beverage choice impacts the health of your teeth.

The cavity causing bacteria in your mouth uses carbohydrates and sugar for food. When bacteria feed on the sugar on your teeth, they leave damaging acids behind that cause cavities. Once you cut back on sugar, and other sources of simple carbohydrates that are easily fermentable, you reduce your risk of developing a cavity.

Examples of sugary beverages include:

  • Soft drinks
  • Energy drinks
  • Sports drinks
  • Lemonade (and other “ades”)
  • Sweetened Coffee or tea drinks
  • Sweetened powdered drinks


Make your teeth happy with these healthy choices:

  • Choose water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Carry a water bottle and refill it during the day.
  • If you desire more flavor, add lemon, lime, or cucumber to your water or drink sparkling water. You want to remember to not sip on acidic beverages throughout the day, but instead drink in one sitting.
  • Be a role model for family and friends by choosing healthy beverages.


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