Rethink what you drink

Mix half sweetened and half unsweetened while you get used to less sugar, and gradually reduce the sweetness.

Rethink your drink contest

Fossil fuels are burned to fill the bottles and dis-tribute them. In fact, sugary drinks are the number one source of added sugars in our diet. For teens, the number shoots up to 34 teaspoons daily. The water that comes out of your faucet is probably safe. And the effects of exposure to the widespread chemicals may add up. The fix? From a funny taste to lead contamination from aging pipes, your tap water may have picked up some unsavory additions along the way. Last summer, a National Institutes of Health NIH committee agreed that bisphenol A BPA , a chemical found in polycarbonate used to make watercooler jugs, sport-water bottles and other hard plastics, but not PET , may cause neurological and behavioral problems in fetuses, babies and kids. While noting that most bottled water is safe, the organization found that at least one sample of a third of the brands contained bacterial or chemical contaminants, including carcinogens, in levels exceeding state or industry standards. The AHA suggests adults should be eating no more than teaspoons of added sugar daily. Check out the lists at nsf.

Labels can be misleading at best, deceptive at worst. How much sugar are you drinking? But a friend who owns a natural food store recently warned her that the plastic could leach chemicals into the water. According to his calculations, it takes about 72 billion gallons of water a year, worldwide, just to make the empty bottles.

This year Aquafina will begin stating on labels that its H2O comes from public water sources. In fact, sugary drinks are the number one source of added sugars in our diet.

By some estimates, it takes about two liters of water to make every liter you see on store shelves.

rethink your drink mi

Take these steps. Treating and filtering tap water for bottling creates even more waste. Carry your plain or filtered tap water in a reusable stainless steel or lined drinking container, and clean it between uses.

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Rethink Your Drink: Reducing Sugary Drinks in Your Diet