The Boston, Mass.-based Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) is calling on beverage manufacturers to create reduced-calorie beverages with no more than one gram of sugar per ounce and that are free of non-caloric sweeteners, such as aspartame, sucralose and stevia.
The HSPH reports that strong evidence shows that sugary drinks are an important contributor to the rise in obesity and type 2 diabetes in the U.S.
The HSPH’s recommendations amount to three teaspoons of sugar per 12 ounces and about 50 calories. HSPH is also calling on manufacturers to offer smaller (eight ounce) bottles of sugary drinks.
And it’s proposing that the Food and Drug Administration require beverage manufacturers to put calorie information for the entire bottle, not just for a single serving, on the front of drink labels.
Re-educate consumer palates
The aim, says the HSPH, is to re-educate consumers’ palates to a lower expectation of sweetness, as well as to give consumers clear information to help them make healthier choices.