A new UCLA study discovered one third of children age two to eleven, drink one or more sugar-based drinks per day. The sugary drinks include such things as soda, energy drinks, sports drinks and bottled ice teas and juices that have added sugar. (Natural juices and diet soda were excluded from the statistics.)
From 2003 to 2009, the percentage of California children who consume at least one sugar-based beverage per day trended down from 49% to 26%. Since then, the percentage has risen to 31%. These percentages fluctuate, based on which California County the children live. In San Bernadino County for example, the percentage is almost 40%, while the more affluent San Diego County, comes in at bit under 30%.
Many health experts and children health advocates have warned this upward trend could lead to increased incidence of childhood obesity, pre-diabetes and even type 2 diabetes in California’s children. They suggest local and state policy makers create policies and public awareness campaigns to stem the rising sugary-drink tide.