Report: Sugary Drink Ads Target Kids
Makers of sodas and sports, energy and fruit drinks are disguising unhealthy products and marketing to children, according to Sugary Drink F.A.C.T.S., a Yale University study delivered Oct. 31 to the American Public Health Association’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
Researchers at Yale University’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity studied 600 drinks made by 14 manufacturers. “We found that children’s exposure to TV ads for full-calorie soda doubled from 2008 to 2010,” says Jennifer Harris, the report’s author. “We also found that energy drinks are heavily marketed to children and teens.”
Among the report’s other findings:
- Many fruit and energy drinks contain as much sugar and calories as non-diet sodas.
- Nearly two-thirds of energy and sugary drinks say they contain “all-natural” or “real” ingredients.
- Energy drinks are marketed to children and teens, though all health organizations say these caffeine-laden beverages are inappropriate for children.
- Beverage company advertising especially targets black and Hispanic children and teens.