How long do you have to run to burn the calories in a soda? How many stairs will you have to climb to make the calories of that Christmas candy disappear? Would you think twice about consuming them if you had that information? I have a friend who always thinks in those terms, "Two more miles," she says every time she indulges in a culinary indulgence, and apparently she's not the only one who reacts that way.
According to a Johns Hopkins University study, recently published in the American Journal of Public Health, teens from low-income neighborhoods in Baltimore, Maryland, bought fewer sodas and other sugary drinks after viewing the information about calories on various signs posted on sales sites. One of the messages stated that a bottle of soda contained 250 calories; another specified that a bottle of soda represented 10% of the recommended daily calories; the third reported that it would take 50 minutes of jogging to burn off the calories in a bottle of soda.
Calorie data reduced soft drink purchases by 40%, and when compared to the number of exercises required, sales of sugary drinks dropped by 50%. This is the first study that links the influence of this type of information on the consumption of sugary soft drinks. If that practice were to be extended to all foods, especially junk food restaurants, how many things would we stop eating? Find out, knowing is power.