Water First: Think Your Drink
Reducing sweetened beverage consumption is one of the most promising strategies for reducing childhood obesity.
-Berkley Center for Weight and Health
Sweetened beverages pour on the pounds. As nutrition spokesperson, Michael Jacobson, puts it, “Quite simply, there is no other food or beverage in the American diet that promotes weight gain and obesity to the extent that soft drinks do.” Studies show that the more sugary beverages kids drink, the heavier they are.
On the other hand, drinking plenty of water is correlated with a healthy weight, as well as a host of other health benefits –improved immune function, dental health and digestion—to name a few. The Tweens Nutrition and Fitness Coalition designed the Water First: Think Your Drink campaign to put water back in its rightful place as the beverage of choice.
Water First Website
The Water First: Think Your Drink website includes fun, interactive features to help tweens and their families reduce sweetened beverage intake, and make water the default drink:
- Drink Calculator shows the sugar, calories and caffeine in a wide variety of drinks.
- Drink Journal lets you log what you drink from day to day. See it in a journal or a graph.
- Hydro Me is a customized virtual character that gives kids a fun way to see the effects of drinking water vs sugary stuff (and try out purple hair!).
- Stuff for Parents, Stuff for Kids, and You Can Do It have helpful info to make the transition.
- Stay on track. We all need a nudge sometimes. Sign up for reminders.
Water First in Schools
School administrators, Site Based Decision Making Councils and PTAs can take some simple steps to make schools water friendly for students and faculty. In Lexington, Mill Creek, Cassidy, Veteran’s Park and Garden Springs have all adopted Water First policies. This PDF has information about How To Use Water First schools
Water First in Communities
Not so long ago Americans drank water, milk and an occasional 8-ounce soda. The sweetened beverage industry has skyrocketed and now we are chugging an amazing array of sodas, coffees, sweet teas and energy, sports and juice drinks. It seems everywhere you turn there’s a super- sized, high cal drink being offered. This comes at a high price to our waistlines, health, wallets and environment.
And then there’s water– the stuff we were meant to drink. It’s fresh, it’s clear and it quenches thirst like no other. Many people drink little or no water. It’s time to put water first. There are simple things communities can do to help people drink more water and rethink their drinks. This PDF has information about How You Can Use Water First In Your Community.