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What Happens When Sugary Drinks Are Banned at Work

by Marianne Navada

Banning the sale of sugary drinks in the workplace led to 48.5% reduction in consumption. The test group lost weight, saw an improvement in insulin resistance, lowered their cholesterol, and 70% saw a decrease in belly fat,. Although the participants did not see an impact in their body mass index.

The study, (published in JAMA) was done at the University of California, San Francisco. In 2015, the university banned the sale of sugary drinks. Participants were assessed before and 10 months after the ban.

The Takeaway

Simple changes such as food choices in workplace vending machines and cafeteria have a significant impact when it comes to employee health and habits. The study did not prohibit people from carrying sugary drinks. Rather sugary drinks were readily available and were replaced by beverages with less sugar.

The same principle can be applied at home. A healthy lifestyle starts with what we keep in the fridge and pantry.

There is a well-known pathway from soda to disease. High sugar intake leads to abdominal fat and insulin resistance, which are known risk factors for diabetes, heart disease, cancer and even dementia. Recent studies have also linked sugar intake to early mortality.

Elissa Epel, PhD, professor of Psychiatry and Director of the UCSF Aging, Metabolism, and Emotions Center
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